Most small business owners recognize that maintaining a talented workforce is key to their company’s success. Although the majority of workers provide value to their companies, some have unique traits that make them high-potential employees. These workers are especially important to a business, as they can enhance a company’s bottom line and also become the next generation of workplace leaders.
High-potential employees often exhibit similar qualities as those of effective leaders. They are frequently self-motivated, goal-oriented and able to recognize the actions needed to meet objectives. They can be ambitious, rarely resting on their laurels, are often reluctant to sit back and let others take charge, and are unafraid of making mistakes that, ultimately, can provide them valuable experience. These leaders tend to be strong communicators who collaborate well with others and, as a result, are often respected by their colleagues.
To help the career development of high-potential employees, it is important for employers to devise a plan that includes the following steps:
Involve senior management
High-potential employees should know that senior management recognizes and values their hard work and dedication. In addition to serving as a morale-booster, this recognition demonstrates management’s commitment to helping employees advance within the organization.
Offer training opportunities
High-potential employees consistently look for opportunities to increase their knowledge and expertise. Allowing them the opportunity to work in other departments or attend seminars may help expand their knowledge base while motivating and engaging them.
Implement a coaching strategy
Even the most talented individuals can benefit from ongoing direction and feedback from supervisors. Managers should consider collaborating with high-potential employees to set goals and provide feedback so employees can recognize their progress and continue to improve their performance.
Everyone appreciates praise for hard work or a job well done. This can be especially true when an employee meets a challenging goal or reaches a new milestone. Employees should be reminded by management how their abilities and efforts positively impact the company.
Develop a career plan
Many high-performing employees are ambitious and eager to reach the next level of their careers, and are willing to put in the extra effort to accomplish their goals. If employees know that an employer is invested in their future, they may feel more inclined to remain with the company and help it flourish.
High-potential employees may be a company’s strongest asset. While already successful in their current positions, these individuals have the capacity to make even greater contributions to the business. When employers recognize and embrace such employees, they are able to help ensure the future success of their organizations.
Eric Bonugli is a district manager and Kay Oder is a Certified Business Performance Advisor for Insperity. They are located in the company’s Austin office. Insperity, a trusted advisor to America’s best businesses for more than 32 years provides an array of human resources and business solutions designed to help improve business performance.