Successful training creates a stronger team and company
Today’s job market is competitive; companies must find ways to set themselves apart to attract top talent.
According to Heidi Capozzi, executive vice president and global chief people officer for McDonald’s, when it comes to attracting and retaining talented employees, “people want to be treated with respect, they want to feel included as part of the team, and they want to have opportunities to learn and succeed.”
A focus on improving the employee experience will draw sales professionals to your organization and keep them there.
Many forward-thinking employers in the life sciences industry recognize that improving employees’ well-being can help make them more engaged and successful. The U.S. Surgeon General recently released a framework for promoting well-being in the workforce. For those who lead and coach remote sales teams, some of the strategies outlined may be especially important, including:
- Providing opportunity for growth.
- Supporting work-life harmony.
- Demonstrating to employees that they matter at work.
Strong and successful training can support all three of these pillars in different ways, improving the overall employee experience and ultimately creating a stronger sales team.
Providing Opportunity for Growth
Perhaps the most obvious way training can improve the employee experience is through opportunities to grow. Most employees want to learn and grow in their roles to reach their fullest potential. In the life sciences industry especially, it’s vital for teams to participate in continuing education to meet the challenges of today’s healthcare providers.
Cross-functional training can expose sales professionals to other parts of the organization, such as medical affairs or national account teams. This can help employees connect to the larger business, recognize how other business units function and work collaboratively to meet both individual and team goals.
Additionally, supporting growth opportunities outside of the company, through learning libraries, seminars or conferences like LTEN’s, can help sales professionals understand the overall market, including areas such as the payer landscape, managed care, business acumen and more.
Investing in employees through high-quality training may also reduce turnover. According to SHRM, when employees are confident in what they are doing in their roles and can see a clear path for growth, they are more likely to stay with the company.
High retention is a hallmark of successful sales teams. This is an area where specialized learning journeys truly shine, by providing access to training content that will prepare employees for roles they want to grow into, or exposing them to content areas and roles they did not even know they had an interest in.
Supporting Work-Life Harmony
Today’s workers seek autonomy and flexibility in their roles. This can take on many different forms, from choices over scheduling to how the work gets done.
When it comes to giving employees autonomy within training and continuing education, microlearning is an effective strategy that can be easily completed in the flow of work. When modules are accessible across multiple devices, with shorter, easily consumed content, individuals can take control of their own education, learning when and where they desire.
Additionally, offering opportunities to learn in different modalities provides the autonomy today’s employees are seeking.
A focus on learning, developing and growing also contributes to employees feeling more confident and resilient in their work — and, consequently, in their lives outside of work. Sharon J. Confessore, Ph.D., principal and founding partner of HRD Enterprises, said, “Focusing on learning builds a learning mindset — seeing challenges as opportunities to learn something new, take a risk and increase proficiency. It shifts less successful outcomes from failures to growth opportunities, building confidence and resilience.”
Demonstrating That Employees Matter
Providing your employees with training opportunities signals that they matter at work. According to the U.S. Surgeon General’s report on workplace wellness, part of mattering at work is enabling employees to feel dignity.
“Dignity is the sense of being respected and valued,” the report said. “When the dignity of workers is affirmed and supported in the workplace, it enhances well-being.”
When managers invest in their direct reports’ learning and growth, it sends a message to employees that they matter at work. Managers may take this a step further by providing customized training resources.
For example, offering specialized learning journeys that target role and experience level shows employees that they are valuable, and their employer is taking the time to invest in them specifically. Similarly, coaching guides can be used to both promote field development and facilitate deeper conversations about the employee’s goals and progress.
Mattering at work is often supported by employees finding meaning in their role. Meaning can arise from seeing the broader purpose of one’s work, which is why it can be critical to guide employees to the mission and impact of a company.
When new-hire training captures how a role connects to the larger organization, to the mission and to the people the company serves, that can drive immediate impact and help employees start off on the right foot.
An investment in strong training for your employees is an investment in their well-being. You can improve your employees’ experience by providing opportunities for growth, supporting work-life harmony and demonstrating to your employees that they matter at work.
Ensuring your employees have access to the content, resources and tools they need to learn and grow will enable your team’s success. It’s a win-win situation: Successful, happy employees are more likely to stay and grow, and the company as a whole is more likely to thrive and flourish thanks to their contributions.