Over the last few weeks I have been writing about career conversations and how valued they are. What happens however if the employee has no interest in developing?

A colleague has just that problem. He is new in both role and to the company. His goals are to grow the team, open new business streams and increase market share. This needs new ways of doing things and some tougher goals too for the team members. My colleague was quite surprised to find, on holding career conversations, that half of the people were very happy in their jobs and had no desire to move on, or even develop. 

There are many possible motivations, not to mention concerns at play here. My colleague tried different approaches and handled the conversations supportively, offering encouragement. He certainly did not want to lose any of his able team. 

One action that did make a difference and helped to change attitudes was to instigate a blanket requirement across the team that everyone must have a work plan that focused on identifying stretch and challenge in the job.    

There was an emphasis on ‘how we do things as a team’. 

This worked like magic and engaged everyone enthusiastically in identifying improvements and their role in these. 

In this case, team improvement seemed to work better than personal development. 

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Janice Caplan

©Copyright Janice Caplan 2019