4 Strategies for Retaining Diverse Talent through Development Programs

Professionals in today’s workforce are highly motivated to improve their skills. In fact, employees have rated professional development as the top characteristic of positive work culture.¹ However, many companies do not prioritize development opportunities for employees. They do not know their employees’ professional goals, and they do not offer learning opportunities in the workplace. This leaves employees feeling “stuck.”

Employees who desire to learn and grow professionally will often start seeking a new job when their development stalls, which results in increased turnover. In the same way, employees who are offered development options in areas that do not align with their goals are likely to look for alternate employment. As a whole, companies who are not providing intentional, goal-aligned development options to their employees are missing out on higher retention rates, improved company culture, and greater attraction of diverse employees.

Read on to learn how to retain diverse talent through your company’s development programs.

Employees who are given development opportunities are better team members and producers. They are more optimistic about the future and more goal-oriented overall. Companies that offer development opportunities attract diverse talent more easily, and they have a higher percentage of retention. Employers who listen to their employees’ desires for development and intentionally help them grow experience better teamwork and improved company results.


But there is something you can do.

Employees themselves state that they are more likely to stay at a company when they are learning and growing. Employees who are developing are happier and more satisfied in their professional lives, which results in better employee output. In addition, companies who actively develop employees increase their chances of filling future positions with internal hires, which strengthens employer brand, company culture, and employee morale, as well as saves time and resources.


Best Practices for attracting more diverse talent through your company website/career page.

  1. Discuss your employees’ personal goals. Engage your employees and discover their personal career goals. Where do they see themselves in three, five, or ten years? What are they most passionate about? What skills do they wish to hone and develop? Knowing your employees’ personal goals will help you discover how their desires intersect with your company goals, which makes all parties feel more productive and fulfilled. Fulfillment at work consistently results in higher employee retention, including diverse employees.
  2. Implement key performance metrics. It’s impossible to determine how to help your employees grow without knowing where their skills are lacking. Implementing a way to measure progress and skill level is critical to discovering how you can help your employees develop. Key performance metrics also help you and your employees track progress and growth over time, which is encouraging and motivating to employees.
  3. Offer feedback frequently. Growth and development cannot occur without feedback, whether positive or negative. If employees don’t know where they’re falling short, they cannot be held responsible for not performing well. Feedback equips employees with knowledge, which then empowers them to learn and develop in a capacity that benefits them professionally as well as improves the company as a whole.
  4. Make promotions attainable.One of the most discouraging feelings for employees, especially diverse employees, is the sense that they are being overlooked for promotions and other opportunities to excel. If employees cannot “move up the ladder,” they are inclined to change jobs. One key way to retain talented, diverse employees is to make promotions attainable. Seek internal hires before accepting external resumes. Make a habit of discussing with employees the job or position they’d like to have in the future, and help them create action steps to get there. Make it clear to your employees that you want them to succeed, and they’ll be much more likely to stay with the company.

So what can you do to get started on your company’s development programs? Check out our latest guide, “Retaining Diverse Talent: Development” for tips on how to make your development programming is more welcoming and inclusive for everyone. The guide covers the essential first steps toward making your website more inclusive. Click here to download the guide today and start making a positive impression on potential customers, partners, and employees!

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