What Is the Importance of Staff Development?

by Donna Ferrier ; Updated September 26, 2017
Developing your staff improves job performance.

Even in the digital age, people are still the driving force of every organization. Your staff needs constant development not only to teach them to perform their assigned duties to the best of their abilities, but also to educate them about new and changing products and services and to help them advance in their careers. Fortunately, staff development carries with it a myriad of techniques and benefits.

Develop Future Business Owners

Staff development teaches potential managers how to operate office equipment, build a budget, facilitate workflow, negotiate contracts and hire employees, according to the PricewaterhouseCoopers website. Even a family-owned business can train a younger family member to eventually take the place of an aging parent so that the family business will continue to grow and prosper.

Train Front-Line Workers

Staff development can change the attitudes and motivate even the most unfriendly workers to want to serve your customers. Development ideas can include fun and uplifting activities such as co-workers passing out notes to congratulate each other on a job well done, particularly if one of your employees sees another solving a difficult customer problem, or workers nominating one another for customer service rewards such as a monetary award, a watch or tickets to a concert or sports event, according to the March 1996 issue of the Signature Service newsletter.

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Train New Staff

New employees, as well as those transferring from another department or division, need to learn their new jobs. Staff development programs can entail sending an employee to a skill-specific seminar or school or enrolling the employee in an appropriate online course that teaches the specific skills the worker’s job requires. Some companies even sponsor their own formal schools or education programs for new employees. In addition, a mentoring program can educate new employees on workplace culture issues specific to your office.

Engage Learning

Teachers in particular are constantly interacting with other education professionals to learn new ways of teaching and different ways students process the information they disseminate in the classroom. Development activities for such an industry might include teachers exchanging ideas in groups, planning lessons together, and discussing school policy, as well as participating in seminars, according to the North Central Regional Educational Laboratory website. Such activities create unity and partnership among school staff.

Keep Up-to-Date

Hardware and software manufacturers release new updates constantly. Retail establishments are always receiving new and improved products and adding new departments and services. Car dealerships have to contend with new technological features and added operating capabilities of new automobiles. Consider offering regular on-site seminars dedicated to one new product or service at a time, or ask an on-site information technology specialist to hold classes on specific new hardware or software updates to save money on off-site courses.

References

About the Author

Donna Ferrier has been a writer and editor since 1990. She has written articles for "Training and Development Journal," "Officer Review" magazine and "Signature Service and Business Printing Technologies Report." Ferrier has written website copy, press releases, resumes, flyers and fund-raising letters. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Longwood College in Farmville, Virginia.

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