designing a professional development program

5 Steps to Designing a Comprehensive Professional Development Program

Your team’s talents, specialties, and unique perspectives are invaluable. Each individual brings something important to the table. The best way to build upon these skills, thereby elevating your team as a whole? A top-notch professional development program.

It can be tricky to identify the right path when designing a professional development program for your team. Professional development programs should be both engaging and relevant. In order to optimize the experience and your investment in resources, companies should partake in due diligence when getting their professional development programs up and running.

Below are five steps to take when designing a professional development program that will help you create a comprehensive, informative, and engaging experience your team will be sure to appreciate. 

Step 1: Survey Your Team

Not sure where to start in determining what your professional development program should focus on? The answer is simple: ask your employees. Through a survey, companies can get a firsthand read on what skills their employees are truly interested in developing. Maybe some want to refine their marketing abilities, or take a deeper dive into newly implemented software. You can tailor your program based on these results

Step 2: Capitalize on Your Own Internal Expertise

With a better idea of what your employees actually want in a professional development program, take an internal audit of specialties or specific expertise within your company. There may be a stand-out graphic designer on your development team with a long list of certifications. Invite them to step into the role of instructor when designing your professional development program. 

Step 3: Create a Quality Space to Build Content 

Once you tap on your colleague to share their hard-earned expertise, it is equally important to put in the prep-work to provide the proper space to impart their knowledge within. Help your employee produce an engaging slide deck with key points and graphics, or even break down their hour-long presentation into bite-sized mini modules. 

Step 4: Prioritize Flexibility 

You now have phenomenal content that you are eager to share with your employees. However, professional development should be both educational and enjoyable. When sticking to rigid schedules and costly time commitments, employees may come to resent professional development programs, as they impose themselves on their already busy schedules. 

Offering flexible learning options will allow your team to take on their professional development on their own time. E-learning opportunities are a fantastic way to promote this, putting the power of education in the employees’ hands. 

Step 5: Connect Employees 

There is value in empowering employees to take on professional development on their own time and at their own pace. However, as the saying goes, two heads are better than one. By setting up a mentorship option within your professional development program, companies can connect colleagues of different backgrounds and skill levels, giving them the opportunity to discuss and share valuable knowledge. Working with coworkers of different backgrounds, they may be able to provide insight on the program that you may never have thought of yourself. 

Ready to build your own stand-out professional development program? Allarium can help. Contact us today to get started. 

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