We measure all sorts of things. Quality, Profit, Safety, Engagement, Retention, Turnover are measured and those are all things that matter. If a red flag is raised on any one of these, depending on the nature of your organization, you go into action quickly and take steps to correct it.
One item that rarely makes it to the list is people development. If your organization expects to sustain and also grow, it clearly belongs on the list of things that measure and matter.
This means you and your fellow leaders spend time on development. The working definition of development is to invest time and energy in a person to equip and ready them to assume a role they may not be currently ready to assume. Here are twenty ways to invest in the development of someone:
- Get to know them as a person
- Check-in with them on their willingness to be invested in and to grow
- Ask them how they want to be developed
- Have them shadow you in a task
- Shadow them as they perform a new task
- Have a coaching conversation where you ask for their perspective, insights and ideas for action
- Find them a mentor
- Give an assignment that stretches them
- Give an assignment that gets something new started
- Provide feedback
- Send them to training
- Train them yourself
- Read a book together and discuss it
- Have them attend a leadership team meeting
- Help them discover their strengths, personality preferences, style, passion
- Ask them to work on solving a problem that exists in the organization
- Give recognition and express confidence in them
- Ask them to teach or mentor someone else
- Ask them to share with a larger group what they already know
- Share development efforts with other leaders
Great…with this list or your own ideas, you’re developing and growing people in your organization. Now what? Now, measure it! Otherwise, it will remain in the background and likely will fall off the priority list. Measure it with as much rigor as you do dollars and cents and other aspects that make it possible to keep your organization running. Apply the same rigor to development because if you don’t measure it, it doesn’t really exist and over time it won’t happen.
Here’s some ways to start measuring development:
- Who are you developing? – Have a list of everyone who you are intentionally investing in their development and track the progress of their development
- How much time are you investing? – Track the number of hours spending in intentional development. Set a current baseline and a target to shoot for
- Who’s stepping up? – Track the number of people who take on a new role as a result of their development
- Did you do it? – This is a yes or no answer that you should be answering every day and for everything you do. A good initial target is to be able to answer “yes” on more than 50% of the things you do and do at make even a small investment in developing someone every day (100%).
- Talk about it – Make review of your development measures a standing agenda item in your leadership team meetings. Reviews the metrics and tracking against your people development goals.
What are you willing to commit to on people development?
How will you start measuring it?