The Importance of Career Development Coaching in the New Abnormal Environment

New normal? There’s no such thing anymore. It’s more like the new abnormal.

We are slowly emerging from months-long economic shutdown and stay-at-home orders. Tens of millions of employees in this country are on unemployment, whether furloughed or laid off. Many employees have been working at home for months, some for the first time. Social unrest is bubbling up in cities around our nation. We don’t know what the workplace is going to look like when the dust settles, but one thing is for certain: There is a lot of adjusting and adapting that’s going to be happening for both employees and employers.

In this new abnormal environment, now is the perfect time for employers to offer career development coaching to their employees. We know it sounds a little like a disconnect — nobody’s even sure what the economy or job market will look like next quarter, is it really a good time to focus on career development for employees? One-word answer: Yes.

 

Why focus on career development now?

It’s all about resetting your employees’ mindsets from unsure, uneasy, and worried to focused, engaged, and forward-looking.

Employee engagement

In a recent blog, we talked about how a Gallup poll showed that only one-third of Americans feel engaged in their work. This was before the pandemic and social unrest. At the time, that number surprised and even alarmed us, indicating that most people are just phoning it in. We’re not so sure about those numbers, but that’s what Gallup’s poll showed.

And now, after COVID, those numbers of disengaged employees may have grown. If your employees are still on the job and your business has not been deemed “essential,” many of your people have been working from home. If this is a new reality for your company and if your employees have never worked remotely, it’s easy for them to feel disengaged and disconnected.

But career development coaching can help. It creates a sense of empowerment and, just as important, a sense of possibilities for good employees who might be wondering what’s next, and how they can climb the ladder and get to where they want to be. it’s about creating a bridge. And, if Gallup is correct, two-thirds of employees need that bridge.

Peace of mind

There is a lot of uncertainty now about the economy. Even if you haven’t furloughed or laid off employees, they may be wondering if they’ll have a job when we get to our “new abnormal.” Unsettled employees are never good news for HR. During this time, they may even be shining up their resumes and casting lines out for work, just in case you don’t hire them back.

Offering them the opportunity to focus on their careers with a career coach during this time sends a powerful message that you value them and want them to succeed, grow, and thrive.

Goals

Everyone is uncertain right now, not knowing what comes next. Career development coaching will help your employees focus on their goals, objectives, and aspirations. Yes, we’re all at home right now and the economy is up in the air. But things will settle down. Your employees’ futures are still out there, waiting for them to put the right building blocks in place to get them to where they want to go.

Now that you’re convinced offering your employees career development coaching is a good idea now, let’s talk a bit about the basics. Career development starts with career planning. This means self-discovery and career path exploration. It creates a road map toward aspirational goals and how the employee might get there. Do they need training? Technical skills?

Another key is holding that employee accountable for those goals, and doing course correction if necessary.

The end result is an employee who sees the road ahead at your company, and that can be a rare commodity, especially now. Offering career development options to your employees shows your commitment to them and their futures, which drives their engagement.

Here are a few fast facts we’ve found about career development coaching.

Individuals who received coaching were more likely to:

 

  • Set work-related goals and meet them.
  • Get others to trust their leadership abilities.

A development coach is a resource you can use to manage these situations so you can:

 

  • Assess the realities of your situation.
  • Define the core challenges to be addressed.
  • Develop alternatives and actions to address these challenges.
  • Receive support and guidance as you implement the actions.

Managing your career involves accepting and assessing the realities of your current position, then partnering with your managers to grow your career and succeed within the organization.GetFive’s career development coaching solution is built for the modern work environment, with on-demand coaching and platform access. Contact us today and we’ll be happy to talk over the basics with you.

 

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