The ‘new year, new you’ mantra is perfectly applicable to companies as well as people. After all, businesses are made up of wonderfully unique individuals that all deserve to start the year by setting goals and creating strategies to achieve them.
As hybrid working looks set to continue well into 2022, remote working continues to challenge businesses in how to identify up-skilling and development needs to support your desired culture and strategy.
slow-down to speed up
Over the past two years we have seen businesses change exponentially and their approach to culture and up-skilling is no different. Many agile organisations that pivoted quickly to suit the immediate needs of the business will need to take a more medium to long term view as we enter another year of uncertainty. This short-termism has in many cases left gaps causing in-efficiencies and work needing to be re-done. By acting so rapidly in response to the pandemic many lost sight of long-term strategic goals and cultural foundations causing insufficient support for their people to deliver on them.
Meanwhile, in other industries and companies, training and development budgets were cut, paused, and redistributed leading to swathes of employees forgoing investment in their careers and professional development since the start of the pandemic.
Whichever camp your business sits in, the new year is the ideal time to take stock of the strategic long-term needs of your company and people and put in place short, medium, and long-term up-skilling programmes. It maybe you need to build a culture of innovation, tackle diversity and inclusion challenges, help teams deliver against your sustainability goals or perhaps you are embarking on a period of transformation. Whatever the challenge, consider the skills and support your people need with these bigger, strategic challenges in mind.
up-skilling without long term commitment is futile
A suite of training and up-skilling alone will not shift behaviours or desired outcomes. Unless the skills taught in the training are referred to regularly, embedded into everyday life and supported by leaders it is easy for people to slide back into old ways. Training must be practical for the individual and the organisation to implement and make tangible.
This means companies need to make a bigger commitment to up-skilling beyond just sourcing a virtual training provider. Instead, tie your training back to your strategic goals and desired culture and ensure you work with partners who can not only deliver training to support these but can help you create long-term change.
identifying skills for the new world of work
There are a plethora of skills leaders and managers require which have been exasperated by the pandemic and remote or hybrid working, namely: empathy and resilience. Both require high levels of emotional intelligence which must be cultivated to ensure these new behaviours are adopted.
Following two years of uncertainty (at best) and grief and loss (at worst), managers and leaders now need to create a sense of stability and psychological safety for their teams to thrive. Living with change means managers require resilience to help them and their teams constantly adapt.
Yet understanding how people feel at work will mean leaders can better support their teams’ wellbeing and performance. No mean feat as change is set to continue with complex, remote working practices making this even harder. Make sure your leaders practice active listening to understand what their teams’ and individuals really need.
Beyond these essential transferable skills there will be a range of other job specific training that needs to be identified and delivered in the coming months to help companies remain competitive. This is especially true in the wake of ‘The Great Resignation’. Tailored training and up skilling packages could help you retain top talent to build the business you require in the future as well as today.
lean into hybrid training delivery
In the early days of the pandemic remote working was thrust upon us leaving many without the basics required to make working from home possible let alone productive. However, almost two years on and many organisations are afforded the privilege of choosing how they want to work ongoing; many opting for a hybrid or flexible solution.
However, people have had very different experiences in the past two years, so while some will relish getting back to in-person events others will respond better to remote training delivery. This is challenging for HR teams, even when you have the technology to back-up hybrid up skilling programmes.
Identify how individuals want to learn instead of assuming you know as this will garner better engagement both in the training itself and when it is put into practice afterwards.
Culture Consultancy have worked with organisations throughout the pandemic across fully virtual, covid secure in-person and hybrid solutions. We have even designed and run workshops with a mix of in-person and virtual delegates in the same session. If you are entering the new year by redefining your strategic goals, aligning your training and development needs, and looking for a partner to challenge and steer you, get in touch.
Keep in touch – sign up to our newsletter to get: the latest news, views, best practice, and exclusive content…