Find a Job That Will Help You Grow

Posted by Kathy Lee on January 06 2014

kathy-lee By Kathy Lee

A recent report written by Mollie Lombardi from Aberdeen examines the business impact of an organization’s focus on learning programs and concluded (based on 185 responses) that there is a definite correlation between organizational success and an emphasis on promoting learning initiatives. Most of the HR professionals surveyed - as well as many other company leaders - recognize the importance of building and developing talent within, especially at a time when the economy is still recovering and millennials are frequently considered “lazy,” “entitled” or “unready” for the workforce. Good news for millennial jobseekers, right?

Unfortunately, despite these findings, the number of organizations with learning programs for the new generation of jobseekers is disappointingly low. Only 19% of organizations have programs for new college hires, while just 36% have dedicated leadership programs for emerging leaders.  

Looking for career development?

If you want to work for a company that will invest in your professional growth, here’s what you should be looking for in potential employers.

Find a mentorship program. Mentoring in the workplace can be invaluable in teaching effective skills that you can’t learn at school. Many Best Companies offer these programs which help millennials identify areas of improvement and grow into leaders.

Choose a workplace that embraces your personal strengths. You know that you are capable of great things, and your employer should, too. At Talent Plus, employees’ strengths are identified with Talent Cards, a company that cares about your career development should try to identify and embrace your personal strengths.

Don’t think that hourly employees are exempt. At Whole Foods Market, 93% of employees are hourly, but development is a priority. Employees are offered professional advancement and personal enrichment programs unusual for a retail environment, and the majority of their employees say they receive training that helps them advance professionally.

Luckily, there are some that are following through and paving the way for other companies by offering millennials and other jobseekers the chance to meaningfully develop their careers.

EY

EY is a world-renowned Big Four accounting firm that hires top talent and puts them to work providing accounting and other professional services to many of the largest companies in the world. All employees, right down to junior hires, are given high amounts of responsibility, and because of the firm’s size and top reputation, there are excellent opportunities for professional growth. There is no dollar cap on tuition, and EY employees racked up 2.9 million hours of formal training in 2012, an average of 82 hours each. Indeed, 92% of the firm’s employees say they are offered training or development that will further their careers.

Talent Plus, Inc.

Being in the business of recruitment, development and retention, Talent Plus knows a lot about talent — especially that of its own employees. 95% of employees here feel they make a difference, which makes sense considering the meaningful investment the company makes in people’s development. Project teams often pair senior leaders with junior team members and encourage them to work equally, side-by-side. From the moment associates walk in the door, they are greeted with Talent Cards that articulate the specific strengths Talent Plus believes that individual can contribute, and why the company is excited and appreciative to have that person as part of the team. Talent Plus applies its own performance development systems internally, and so Career Investment Discussions, mentorship programs, individualized learning programs and a range of recognition awards are part of the fabric of the workplace.

Miami Children’s Hospital

Miami Children’s Hospital operates not only a hospital but also a network of pediatric outpatient centers in Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties. Kids and their families are not the only ones being taken care of: the company offers excellent professional development support, with over 900 courses and in-service trainings, undergrad tuition reimbursement and full coverage for MBA and Ph.D. programs. “This organization is unique in putting in tremendous effort and money in developing its employees,” says one employee. “Here, you can count on developing your career to its full potential.”

Is professional development a priority for you when looking for a job?