Leading people is about more than just completing the job. As leaders, we must priorize helping our people reach their full potential. People aren’t meant to be static – people want to improve, grow, and achieve mastery and autonomy over their work. People want to serve a higher purpose. As leaders within any organization, it is our responsibility to develop our people within the scope of their work and personal lives.
The Benefits of Developing Your Team
Spending time developing your people can have dramatic impacts on your team’s performance for several reasons.
- It shows that you care about them.
- It tells your team about who you are and what you care about.
- It can increase team morale, mutual understanding between team members, and cooperation. It helps create a “we” environment.
- It helps your team develop new skills.
- It can encourage creativity and curiosity that encourages your people to pursue personal growth on their off-time, which in turn benefits the team.
- It can help create more well-rounded people for your team and for society. A positive work environment can overflow into our communities becuase of what our people take home with them.
Four Ways to Develop Your Team
- One on One Feedback
- Informal/formal education offered by your company
- Many companies have programs to enhance the technical skills of their employees and sometimes even offer funding for college. Find out what opportunities are available and share them with your team.
- Leader Led Material
- Everyone has something to share. We all have valuable experience and knowledge. Share what you know by developing some of your own content based on the learning you do on your free time. Teach people something you know well or really care about.
- Group Discussions
- Take material from your personal learning and turn it into a discussion. Share content and develop questions to spark conversation. Don’t limit content to work related topics.
Engaging in developing your people can be challenging, awkward, and it can even go in unexpected directions particularly during leader led material and group discussions. Don’t be discouraged when it doesn’t go as intended. Get back up and keep trying. The only way to get good at teaching and developing your people is to routinely do it.
One hour a week. That’s all I’m asking. (1) out of (40) hours. That’s 2.5% of your team’s working hours.
We will only have time to develop our people, if we make it a priority. We owe it to our people to make their development one of our priorities.
Get out there and develop your people. Start this week!