This is part five of a 5-part blog series on ways to dramatically improve the ROI of employee development that do not cost a cent.
5. Define your development objective FIRST… then the method
You maximize your ROI for employee development when you start my clearly identifying and agreeing upon the learning objective. To “take a class in excel” is not a learning objective, but to “develop the ability to maintain data within the master customer spreadsheet by the end of the quarter” is a learning objective. Learning objectives should be specific and measureable and integrate into the “real world”. You may wish to use the traditional SMART tool to define a development objective. A good development objective targets the desired capability/s of the individual (#3 above); defines clear expectations for the learner (#2 above); and, help you to select the best development strategy/s (#4 above) to develop/enhance the specific needs of this individual. Once defined the development objective can also be used in daily conversation (#1 above) to track progress and encourage learning application. It is also recommended to limit the number of development objective to 1 or 2 – to focus attention and to encourage direct applications and feedback in the “real world”. Too many objectives diffuse resources, time/attention, reducing the return of the development investment.
S – Specific
M – Measurable
A – Achievable
R – Realistic
T – Timebound
For other ideas on improving your ROI-p contact: jim ice & associates