Purposeful Talent Development: A Guided Approach

compass on a map signifying guidance
Jennifer Stangl Photo
Director of Professional Development

4 minutes

3 tips for really taking action on talent development in 2019.

Year after year, organizations identify key priorities for the coming year. For a while now, talent development has been a standard item on the list. Leaders understand that, for their organizations to meet strategic goals and grow, the right people must be in the right roles. However, as great as it is to have talent development as an identified priority, what is really key is what organizations are doing as a result. 

As with most things, an organization’s talent development actions speak louder than its words. Some organizations that identify talent development as a priority still treat it like a line item. They know they should have talent development on the list, so they do, but they fail to put a plan in place so talent development really makes an impact. With a guided approach, talent development can support both the staff and organizational needs today and tomorrow. A guided approach means having and following a clear strategy to focus development efforts and best leverage available resources.

With budget season upon us, ask yourself: Is talent development going to be a true priority or just a line item at my credit union? Here are a few tips for how you can use a guided approach to really take action on talent development in the coming year.

1. Align your talent development efforts with organizational priorities.

Step one is making sure you have identified organizational priorities. These are not department priorities but goals and objectives for the entire organization. With the organizational priorities in mind, identify the critical competencies staff need to accomplish them. Examine the competencies to understand the behaviors staff need and identify focused development opportunities to help staff learn these behaviors. This process gives individuals a development path aligned to the organization, helping them see the value and purpose for their learning. 

2. Focus on individualized development.

The days of standardized development are behind us. Employees today are looking for opportunities to grow and develop in ways that suit their career goals. Be sure to blend development for current role and future roles, with some opportunities aligned to personal areas of interest. An individual development plan creates a platform to blend technical development with future growth, while tossing in personal development goals as desired. An IDP also supports an employees’ desire for direction with their development. It provides resources for those unaware of development opportunities, and guidance for those that may not know where to begin or are unsure of which direction to move. Move away from development for development’s sake, and guide individuals to the resources that will support individual development, while maintaining a connection to the organization.

3. Leverage resources.

Whether you have a learning and development team with a strong internal training catalog or your internal training is focused on compliance needs and building technical skills, leveraging external offerings alleviates the strain on your resources (both budget and staff) to create your own. There is no need to reinvent the wheel with development content; take advantage of the massive open online courses, articles, videos, podcasts, blogs, webinars and conferences that are readily accessible. This helps your staff feel individually supported, providing access to content aligned with individual development goals, while freeing up time for staff in human resources, learning and development and talent development to focus on other organizational priorities and initiatives. Identify the resources that are valuable to your staff, such as CUES Learning Portal, powered by Degreed, and provide access to a multitude of educational resources. 

Taking a guided approach provides your credit union with a skilled and engaged workforce designed to support your organizational strategy. The benefits to a guided talent development approach are countless, however, if you want to elevate employee engagement, support individual development, improve collaboration among staff or build a pipeline of future leaders, take action with your talent development. It’s worth the investment!

Jennifer Stangl is CUES’ director of professional development.

CUES Learning Portal is a new benefit for members as part of the new 2019 memberships, providing access to curated content and pathways aligned to drive development, alleviating the burden of searching for quality resources.

CUES Consulting provides guidance and support in identifying, evaluating and developing high potentials within the organizational to create a future leadership pipeline. Additional offerings help you understand your organizational climate, how talent development is viewed within the credit union and additional data to help you implement organizational strategy. Contact Jennifer Stangl, director of professional development at CUES, to learn more.

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