Strategies for employee evolvement

When a business is successful and experiences rapid growth as a result, there is the potential for some employees to struggle to maintain their ‘fit’ within the company and its new size and direction. At start-up level, these employees may have been ideal to get the business underway, but overtime may have not evolved their skills with the pace the company requires.

According to Jobvite Recruiter Nation Report 2016, cultural ‘fit’ was cited by 60% of recruiters as being of high importance in hiring decisions, and that being a good ‘fit’ is not just about finding the right person, but finding them at the right time for the company.  The role of good leaders is to recognize when the time is right for the correct fit of person, as well as when others are out of alignment with the company.

We believe that the following three strategies could have a positive impact on your growing business, and help employees to better evolve with your company.

1.       Make it easy to establish employee development and paths to exit 

Instead of treating employee departures as being sensitive, it is recommended to encourage employees to discuss their plans and aspirations for the future openly with their leadership, even if they do not align with the projections of the company. 

Many members of staff leave because they feel their opportunities for growth are limited, so it is good to encourage honest and open conversations to unearth areas of opportunity.  When a situation arises where the individual is not aligned with the requirements of the company, then ensure the path to exit is seamless and pain-free for both employee and employer. 

It is important to be open and transparent with regards to the expectations of the role, and the level of skill and drive required from the individual, such that if progress is not seen, then the route is to exit or improve.

2.       Understand Personality

This can be achieved through implementing personality tests to discover the drive and adaptability of an individual, helping to understand what motivates them and whether this can be harnessed to support your company.  There does, however, need to be a balance, as having the same fit of person across all the company can have its downside, with a team of overlapping strengths and weaknesses ultimately missing innovative ways of thinking. 

3.       Experience does not always equal the best fit for the company

All candidates need a baseline of technical skill to succeed, but the best candidates are well-rounded people whose intrinsic characteristics align organically with your company’s values.  Many companies want to hire candidates who can come in and immediately do the job, but although they typically start in their positions with the necessary skills, they can have limited growth potential. This can manifest itself when the interview process is left solely up to managers, who may feel under pressure to fill positions, which does not always produce satisfactory long-term results. A more balanced view could be achieved by using an interview committee to support and access process. This would ensure only the most suited candidates are employed, as opposed to positions filled in a rushed manner.

In summary, once a candidate is brought into the business, the strategies suggest constant reassessment of skill sets, opportunity areas and goals, to ensure alignment with the business plan and company’s direction. Should the reassessment conclude that there is no longer a fit between the employee and the company, then the firm must move proficiently to exit the employee and replace with a new and more relevant candidate, or provide the necessary progress development plan to realign the employee with the business.