Aspirations for Personal Growth - EmployeeConnect HRIS
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Aspirations for Personal Growth

The enhancement of employee engagement and overall organisational performance is significantly influenced by personal growth and development. A strong connection exists between individual advancement and the retention of employees. The retention of staff stands as a crucial and continuous preoccupation for virtually all employers. This rationale underlies the inclusion of Personal Development Plans (PDPs) within the performance management frameworks of most enterprises. Despite the several benefits that PDPs showcase, they have also drawn substantial critique. Consequently, HR professionals are presently reassessing and reevaluating the concept of PDPs, actively seeking out alternative approaches.

One of the primary issues surrounding PDPs is their reduction to a mere tool for generating pay records, with subsequent disregard. This leads to a wastage of time, not just for employees, but also for managers. This predicament underscores the necessity of replacing PDPs with SMART Personal Development Objectives that are consistently revised and reviewed.

By transforming PDPs into SMART objectives, their significance amplifies, fostering employee accountability and goal attainment. Therefore, promoting the establishment of SMART objectives in conjunction with performance-related goals becomes imperative. This practice empowers the HR function to compile these developmental objectives, subsequently shaping the organisation’s training requirements.

To ensure the utmost impact while crafting and implementing personal development objectives in your organisation, adhere to the following delineated steps:

By converting PDPs into SMART objectives, it offers them more weight and encourages employees to be accountable and deliver accordingly. Thus you must encourage employees to set SMART objectives along with performance-related objectives. This enables the HR function to collate these development objectives to determine the training requirement of the organisation.

When create and implement personal development objectives in your organisation, follow the below-mentioned steps for optimal impact:

  1. Educate Your Workforce on Personal Growth Goals: HR professionals should be mindful that employees might not be well-versed in the concept of setting objectives. Incorporating goal-setting techniques into training programs or HR communications is essential. Clearly elucidate the meaning and importance of personal development goals to employees. Ensure ample supportive learning resources are accessible, employing mediums like easily accessible animated videos to effectively convey HR concepts. These videos can cover performance-related topics, including crafting effective objectives.
  2. Foster Employee Ownership of Objectives: Recognise that creating objectives often leads to increased motivation for achieving them. Embrace the notion that employees should shape their own personal growth objectives, rather than merely adhering to top-down directives. This shift empowers employees, significantly driving productivity and performance. While managers can offer guidance, ensure employees take the lead. When discussing personal growth objectives, stress that these goals need not solely focus on areas requiring improvement; they can centre on nurturing existing strengths.
  3. Regularly Review Personal Development Goals: Acknowledge that setting personal growth objectives is not a once-a-year task. Establish a routine for employees and managers to regularly sit down and review objectives. These consistent check-ins facilitate feedback sharing, progress assessment, obstacle identification, and the formulation of new goals after successfully accomplishing previous ones. Employ an online performance management system to help employees track their objectives and check-ins. Alternatively, offline tools like one-on-one meeting templates can be useful for smaller organisations.

Extending the Scope of Personal Growth Goals:

Research in goal setting investigates whether individuals perform better when tackling challenging goals or more manageable tasks. Findings indicate that stretching goals leads to notably enhanced performance. While considering personal development objectives, bear in mind this insight, but maintain a realistic perspective. Objectives that push individuals beyond their capabilities can result in frustration, anxiety, and decreased motivation.

By adhering to these guidelines, your organisation can anticipate heightened performance and cultivate a thriving, productive work environment.

For more relevant posts:

  1. 5 Things HR Can Do to Improve Employee Experience. 
  2. Cultivating Empathy: A Pathway to Sustainable Success. 
  3. Strategies for Creating an Enhanced Work Environment. 


Matthew Dedes