Personalized Development Plans: How Can They Benefit Your Organization?

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Despite scouting the best talent for your company, you shouldn’t neglect the importance of developing them further. A failure to do so can negatively impact company performance, with personnel that were once highly competent, but unfortunately were left behind. Cultivating the best of the best is a productive business approach, which proves how much you value the potential of your employees. Unfortunately, a lack of investment in employee development can leave staff frustrated, and ultimately lead to resignation. Since retaining staff is such an important initiative, you’d be wise to invest in them to show your appreciation for what they do. This is a mutually beneficial situation, especially when you consider staff will be better equipped to perform their everyday duties. Finding top talent is one thing, but keeping them is even harder. Nurturing staff with an individualized plan of action is a great approach, which can be developed using a development plan sample as a foundation. Personalized plans are advantageous because they take into account the departmental needs of the employee, which differ on a case-to-case basis. Development is an often ignored, yet crucial component of a progressive organization. Standard training is great, but staff are more likely to leave when their individual needs aren’t considered. But what exactly is an individual development plan? Check out this explanation below, and observe this development plan sample for further clarification.

What is An Individual Development Plan?

Most employees show an interest in self-development, and are thus enthusiastic about transforming their skillsets. A career change will more often than not be in their best interests, but not if the plan doesn’t use attention to detail. To underline your employee’s worth to the organization, you should tailor a self-development plan for a designated period. This will represent a scope for progression, which should be readily adjustable to changing circumstances. The plan should be reviewed periodically, to match individual and company goals while working in accordance with annual reviews. Plans offer a comprehensive scope for development, which should align with company visions. They should outline the soft and hard skills necessary to be successful, targeting critical improvement. Because everyone has different weaknesses, everyone will have different focal points and attention areas. Companies must change in order to grow, so if you can groom employees to progress in line with the company, you’re predisposing them to a long-term commitment. This truly is a win-win situation, where you’re cultivating a workforce who are dedicated to success.

Why Should You Deploy Individual Development Plans?

Facilitate Career Goals

By taking a genuine interest in your employee’s ambitions, you’ll receive loyalty and enthusiasm in return. By catering to the individual needs of staff, they’ll feel appreciated, and more likely to reciprocate positive energy with hard work. Staff will remain motivated, and more receptive to change when it’s introduced, with an incentive to embrace.

Increase Knowledge

Employees will sharpen skills relevant to their role, and perhaps to expand their horizons beyond what’s currently asked of them. A developing employee is an employee who’ll continue adding value to the organization, with a culture built on a continuous improvement philosophy.

Utilize Strengths

Each employee can bring their own unique skillset to the equation, so it’s important you can identify and leverage these accordingly. Working out what employees flourish in is a great way to maximize the potential of your workforce, creating a cohesive whole who can collectively focus on reaching company objectives. Discover what your employees do best, and determine how you can best use them. This will enhance employee motivation, while cultivating a workforce who are satisfied in their roles. Staff will be more committed to their position if they’re comfortable with what they’re doing.

How Do You Create a Plan That Works?

It will take due care and attention to devise, but with adequate planning you can achieve your goals. If you’re seeking a rough outline of how your plan should look, you can research a development plan sample online, while taking advantage of these two crucial notions:

Business Direction

Where is your business going? If you’re in a transitional phase, you’ll want to develop actions which cultivate new leaders. Development plans should align with company objectives, to equip staff with the skills they need to meet long-term objectives. Perhaps you need more managers in your organization, in which case you’d focus on delivering valuable managerial skills throughout plans. Always promote employees internally when you can, rather than introducing staff from the outside world.


Engaging in two-way communication with staff is vitally important. You will learn a lot more about your team, how you can narrow knowledge gaps, and how you can appease employees in ways that benefit the company. Employee input is valuable, because it allows you to foster growth which matches staff ambition, establishing an understanding of where staff see themselves long-term.
Jason is the Lead Author & Editor of TrainingStation Blog. Jason established the Training Station blog to create a source for news and discussion about some of the issues, challenges, news, and ideas relating to training, learning and development.