In this week’s Forum Focus, we take a look at the different views on employee education and why it’s key to have a great manager in order to foster a great sales team.
An organization’s staff or employees are, and will continue to be, the top indicator of an organizations success. In his piece for Chief Learning Officer, David Vance shares the three different ways in which business leaders think about education. Some think of it as a wise investment in their most important asset, some as a benefit, like health insurance, and others see it as a way of achieving their organizational goals. Vance also writes that because of this, “investing in people only makes sense.” Not only will the investment boost your human capital, it will lead to greater productivity, innovation and success.
Margaret Heffernan wrote a piece for Inc. that supports the notion that investing in your employees is key to business success. Heffernan reflects upon a time when an employee told her he wanted to leave “because he thought he’d gotten about as far as he could within [her] company.” Continuing to train employees will not only hone old skills, but it encourages the development of new ones.
At Forum, whether education is offered as an employment benefit or as a mandatory part of the job, we see great value in investing in employees and management teams. The investment can only pay off if the new skills and ideas are reinforced, learned well and sustained. In our recent survey, we found that 63% of business leaders are only “somewhat efficient” at sustaining behavior change at best. However, 14% are getting results.
When it comes to sustaining behavior change, we know that one of the key challenges is getting the managers onboard and sustaining the changes themselves. In his piece for the Harvard Business Review, Andris Zoltners writes that if a CEO had to choose, they’d rather have an average manager with an excellent team of salespeople instead of the other way around.
“Clearly, the best sales forces have both excellent salespeople and excellent managers,” Zoltners writes. “A team of excellent salespeople will win sales and make this year’s goal, regardless of who the manager is. But the success of that team will be short-lived. Eventually, an average manager will bring all of the salespeople that he manages down to his level.”
What are your thoughts on employee and manager education? Is it something you offer as a benefit or as a requirement for the job at hand?
Share your thoughts and insight in the comments and join us in the conversation on Twitter.
Tags: Andris Zoltner, business, Chief Learning Officer, David Vance, employees, focus, harvard business review, human capital, investment, learning, management, sales, success, Sustaining Behavior Change, The Forum Corp, twitter