Here at Climb Online, we pride ourselves on our employee’s development being a huge part of our culture. See our top 5 tips below on how to create a culture of development from our People and Talent Manager, Laura Rios:
1. If you grow, we grow
Our approach to everything we do goes by the motto of ‘if you grow, we grow’, including supporting our staff on their development journey. I believe the greatest asset to a company is their people, therefore, encouraging them to set professional goals and supporting them into achieving these will eventually pay off as the teams keep growing.
“But what if I develop my staff and they leave?” There is always the risk no matter how small or big the company is, however, what if they stay? It’s great to be recognised as a company that provides a platform that will push you to reach your goals or take you to that next level, whether is here or somewhere else!
2. Create a clear and visible leadership structure
Creating a leadership structure is fundamental, especially for SMEs. At Climb Online we have The Leadership Roadmap, which is a structure of what progression looks like at Climb Online for leadership roles, and The Leadership Principles, which explains how to lead the Climb Online way, based on our core values.
These two documents describe the different levels and job titles within our leadership team and lists their main responsibilities.
Sharing this with the team has been very positive and as we grow, this structure will become more important as a guide for objectives setting, promotions, team restructures, etc. It’s not only trackable but also can be used as a checklist for employees to start working on the skills they will need to be able to excel in these roles.
3. It all starts from within
In every career you are at, it is important to always have a manager that supports you and pushes you to self-develop. I’m a true believer that if you are waiting for your company to develop you, eventually you will get stuck. It doesn’t matter how big or small it is, no one will take you to that next level but yourself.
Our culture is highly impacted by this because we ensure that when we are recruiting, we are reaching out to people who have a will to push themselves and progress, without expecting us as a company to give it all to them. Moreover, all managers set at least one objective related to self-development to each of their team members and most of the time these are not related to their job directly.
4. Share, share, share
The leadership team plays a big part when creating a development culture. All managers are encouraged to allow spaces for brainstorming, ideas sharing, and team catch-ups where they can share their expertise and knowledge with the rest. Even between managers, these sessions are fundamental, as they complement each other with their own leadership and managerial techniques.
One thing is for sure at Climb Online, we are all in our learning process, even the ones at the top! From our MD doing spontaneous role plays in the office floor about customer service to our scheduled Wednesday Wisdom training sessions, everyone can share with the rest of the team their tips and more.
5. Get feedback and keep improving!
A big part of creating culture comes from feedback. Every business needs to hear back from their people otherwise there is no way you will know what to change or to do better. Just because you have implemented processes doesn’t mean you can’t change them!
I guarantee you that by doing this you will always find new ideas to implement into the existing culture. Though feedback shouldn’t be only about the culture or the company in general, it should also be about their roles and the way managers are supporting them to develop.
Managers firstly need to ask their team members about their goals, then ask what they are expecting from them and the company to help them reach those goals. Start asking questions such as:
‘Where do you see yourself in 6 months, 1 year and 5 years’
‘What skills do you think you need to do your job better’
‘What skills do you lack that will make those goals achievable or easier to achieve’
‘What do you think I can help you with during that journey’
‘How am I doing in supporting you with X goal’, etc.
The beauty of asking for employee feedback is that you will find out what is working and what is not, and at the same time you are building trust and loyalty with your team.