Leadership development has become a more critical aspect of corporate operations in recent years, especially given the increasing diversity found in the workforce. With younger employees entering the workplace and baby boomers continuing to put off retirement, enterprises have a fresh set of needs when it comes to ground level management and oversight.
In addition to industry-specific skills training, decision-makers also need to ensure that leadership training programs include lessons related to communication and corporate culture building. With strong and prepared managers and supervisors on the floor, businesses will be better positioned to adapt to evolving consumer demands and sustain consistent performance despite market turbulence.
Bringing it home
Forbes recently listed several ways in which companies can make sure that their leadership training programs lead to the achievement of both short- and long-term objectives. A combination of progressive classroom and mentoring programs and advanced technological tools will often help improve the efficacy of such employee development initiatives.
According to the news provider, one of the most critical aspects of these investments is customization that stems from employee preferences and needs. For example, only serving the learning styles of half the participants will never lead to optimal and widespread benefits, nor high returns on training investments.
Instead, companies need to focus on meeting the needs of all leadership development participants, especially in the earliest stages of deployment. Additionally, the source argued that many companies are struggling with back-end processes, including the measurement and evaluation of past programs in the months and years that follow.
Without any attention to the successes and failures of previous programs, companies will have a relatively small chance of improving performances in the future. Finally, Forbes asserted that companies must follow through on these investments at strategically decided-upon intervals, as knowledge garnered from traditional approaches can better inform current strategies.
New learning technology has presented companies with unique opportunities to affordably increase the diversity of training content and subsequently foster an engaging environment in which employees can learn. Gamification has been a major trend in this arena, and Reuters recently reported that most businesses can benefit from launching associated programs.
Gamifying applications, especially when the content is relevant and the tools used to deliver the programs are seamless, can dramatically improve employee engagement in leadership training programs. Reuters argued that companies of all sizes have seen improvement following the launch of both internal and external gamification efforts.