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Best Of: Development is a Choice

I often hear managers tell me that they consider training and development important. In fact, they want more training and development too. When they hear that I am a learning professional, they usually go out of their way to tell me how they are such big supporters of what I do.

Yet, they very rarely attend training and their team rarely attends training. Even worse, they don’t have any formal development plans for their team.

When I ask about the disconnect, they usually say “there just isn’t enough time”. I usually nod politely and knowingly. Inside my head, I’m thinking BS.

Managers, and employees, make choices every day over what to prioritize. The fact that they never have time for training is simply a fact that they don’t consider it a priority. They say it is important, but none of their actions support that. They despise required training (as do I), but it is the only way to get people to do it. Given the choice, they will not get it done because it isn’t a priority to them.

Managers can delude themselves into thinking it isn’t their fault, but the reality is that it is. Employees know it too. It doesn’t matter how much you say you value development and put up posters with value statements on the wall, your actions matter more than your words.

So when your employees leave or aren’t growing enough because of the lack of development opportunities - it is all on you. Not them, not the company, not the economy. You.

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