Career Planning - Never Fail to Plan
'They then change from aiming at the maximum possible to the minimum excusable'
-Anthony Jay in Management and Machiavelli
The 'they' referred to are employees who have worked out that they are not going to go much further, and the small increase in pay they might get is not worth the effort on their part.
There are numerous reasons why people get 'stuck' in organizations. Sometimes it is lack of forward planning by the organization itself of its own future development, inadequate expertise in the manpower department, or the employees' own boss. Blocking subordinates' promotion is self-defeating. To develop their skills and potential, people need to feel they have somewhere to reach into, new challenges to face, and further recognition to earn. Career planning must encompass these changes and ensure that staff has incentive for self-development even where there is no upward mobility.
Career planning has to form part of the longer term company strategy - the human resources manager, and probably professional career counseling personnel as well as the line manager. But there is a tendency for line managers to neglect their role in this area and to leave it to others. To ensure continued development, frequent and creative assessment of career possibilities for all staff is essential.
The motivation of most jobs tends to fade after 4 or 5 years, and if upward mobility is not a possibility, other methods of changing or enriching work must be used to rejuvenate established staff, and given the organization the longer benefit of their experience and particular skills.
If you plan to use career planning as a development tool, ask yourself the following questions:
• Do I know my subordinates' aspirations, abilities and potential sufficiently well?
• Do I know enough about career possibilities elsewhere within and outside the organization?
• Can I enlist the help of the personnel department, professional counseling, or the company trainer to obtain guidance, training, and advice on career development for my subordinates?
• Had I better start doing all this as quickly as possible and discuss it with my boss before I get caught in the same trap?
Organisation development in fast moving companies that depend on new technologies and rapid change is becoming more organic and less hierarchical.
Finally, Career planning is not something which is not related to the organizations, but it is one of the key to success in organizational development.
The author is a Senior HR Professional, HR Consultant, Career Management Consultant, Soft Skills Trainer and Founder CEO of aimkaam consultrainers, Hyderabad. You may reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org
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