Skills Maintained and Pursued
We’re not in the prediction business (the one business that never seems to change), but we will acknowledge that an emphasis on skills development is more necessary now than it has been in recent memory. Technology is no longer a mere business accoutrement; it is a foundational component of worldwide commerce. We depend on infrastructural hardware and cutting-edge software to facilitate transactions, streamline communication, and help us manage the inner workings of our companies.
As it is, when we talk about an employee’s skill set, we are very often referring to their technical proficiency with job-specific tools. Not across the board by any means, but very often. Maintaining a competitive degree of competency with such tools is achievable only through training measures and through being introduced to improved ways of doing things.
But that all comprises a second step… the first step is to understand where skills gaps exist, and such gaps are not always so quickly identified. The challenge here is that leaders frequently find themselves dealing with incomplete data – it’s often there to be found but goes untapped when needed.
Aggregating and assembling that data is now a readily available option, one that will inform you of not only where to look in better assessing your team, but what data points to focus on. We think of it as an illuminating process, with your untapped data existing as (metaphorical) dark matter. There are things your employees do well and things they don’t. More than just improving their skills with respect to the latter, you will also create opportunities and channels through which they can share their strengths with colleagues - you have the opportunity to improve your team by empowering individuals and systematically honing their skills based on a 360° picture of their competencies.
We mentioned earlier not being in the prediction business, but it’s plainly apparent that the professional sector is only growing more competitive. It only makes sense to respond to that reality as though it is unlikely to change for some time. Fortunately, there are resources available to help leaders keep up with that growth. And once you know where to look, you’ll have the answers as to what training is necessary, what skills are in need of reinforcement, and what team/individual attributes are already in good shape. Either way, that initial knowledge is necessary and too often obscured by inadequate software.
There’s value to be had in training a light on your company’s dark matter.