Within the work environment, various individuals possess different competencies, which together can be applied to make effective decisions. Participating in the Strength Finder Test can play a critical role in helping employees establish their strengths. Some of the strengths that employees may possess include; flexibility, teamwork, creativity, communication and interpersonal skills, leadership and dependability. Each of these strengths is critical to employee decision making.
Employees are expected to make a range of decisions in the course of their duties. The quality of these decisions will largely depend on the employees’ competencies. To that end, when a manager is designing a training tool for the employees, the employees’ strengths should be put into considered. Aligning the competencies with the training tool will ensure that the employee becomes better in their decision-making processes (Phillips and Gully 52).
Employees may take different decision-making approaches based on their competencies. For instance, an employee whose strength is leadership is more comfortable in interacting with colleagues and directing effort. Besides teamwork, such an employee will be more comfortable in working with his colleagues and inspiring them towards more excellent performance. Decisions may be arrived at, through a consultative process. Therefore, to leverage on this skill, it will be appropriate to ensure that the training regime helps to improve these strengths. One training tool that a manager can use to enhance the decision-making capabilities of such an employee is to them opportunities to lead. For instance, the employee can be given the responsibility of running a project with clear goals at each phase of the project. This will provide the employee with an opportunity to improve his leadership skills. Secondly, it is also essential for the manager to employ coaching. In the cause of evaluating the project, any deficiencies on the employees’ leadership capabilities can be resolved by having both the manager and employee agree on a plan of action to address the gaps.
There are employees whose strengths lie in the technical area. Such an employee may be good in practical assignments. This may entail using various skills to understand problems and design solutions. Such employees may have poor interpersonal skills but excellent problem solving and analytical skills. The manager may have a range of options in developing the strengths of such employees. One tool the manager can employ is mentoring. Mentoring will involves, the employee working under the supervision of an experienced employee to learn new skills. Mentoring usually is for a given period, and both the mentor and mentee are expected to set target of new skills to be attained at the end of the mentoring process. If the skills the employee wants to learn cannot be trained in-house, the manager should help the employee access the training outside the organization. This may include giving the employee academic leave and extending financial assistance.
Development of employees with different competencies
Managers have the onerous responsibility of providing a conducive environment for their employees to develop their strengths. The strengths are needed in solving various management problems at the organization. The ability to leverage on these strengths will help the organization realize and maintain its competitive edge.
Communication skills can be developed by giving employees responsibilities that involve communication. This may include; leading teams, speaking at events, preparing reports and handling communication. The idea is to build confidence in the employee for effective communication. However, this is not possible if opportunities are not extended to the employees. Further, the employee must have the confidence that the manager trust their decisions (Bratton 58). The primary challenge in employee development process is how a manager handles failure. If the right thing has not been done, the employee has to be guided and corrected in a way that preserves his or her dignity. As long as the employee works in an environment where they fear making mistakes, then they are not free to explore and develop. The employees should have clear guidelines of what is expected of them.
Creativity and innovation can be developed by way of empowering employees to make independent decisions. As long as employees turn to managers even for the simplest of problems, then a dependency syndrome develops. The employees will lack the courage to do anything without the approval of the manager (Bratton 37). Some managers may love this arrangement, but it is counterproductive. It is essential to have clear policies that set boundaries within which employee can make decisions and implement them. Outside of these limitations, the manager will have to be consulted before the decision is taken or implemented. If employees are adequately empowered, they become motivated and work to explore new ideas that can lead to better solutions for the organizations.
Leadership as a strength can also be developed. Employees who show potential for leadership can be exposed to activities that help build their capabilities. For instance, they can have the opportunity to lead teams, plan events or come up with new ideas or solutions to existing problems. It will also be essential to give room for employees to infuse their ideas and take responsibility for the outcomes. In the process, employees develop the courage needed to make decisions. More importantly, the leader has to give full support and encouragement so that the employees know they can count on them if things do not work. This provides employees confidence in trying out new things.
- Bratton, John. Introduction to Work and Organizational Behaviour. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2015.
- Phillips, J. and S. M. Gully. Organizational behavior: Tools for success. Mason, OH: South-Western Cengage Learning, 2013.