Different types of employee personal development include one-on-one mentoring, group seminars, and individual employee plans for improvement in specific areas. Personal development training has the purpose of helping employees build the skill sets they need to do their jobs as proficiently as possible. Most employee personal development plans are designed to identify each individual's strengths and weaknesses as well as hard and soft skills. Effective personal development on the job also increases employees' confidence, satisfaction with their work, and productivity. Workers who make these positive associations with their jobs are generally more satisfied with their careers because they feel their work has a high degree of value.
Many industries include mentoring as part of their employee personal development strategies. A new employee is usually paired with a more experienced staff member who helps with different areas such as goal-setting, filling in knowledge gaps, and working in groups effectively. If new hires come to a job with slightly outdated computer skills, their mentors can help them find and schedule the needed software courses to get them up to date. Working with mentors can also be beneficial for employees who need further improvement in interpersonal soft skills such as public speaking or making effective sales pitches.
Personal development courses are common for groups of employees in the same company or department. Some of these classes cover topics such as safety measures for employees who handle dangerous materials or equipment on a regular basis, and attendance at these types of personal development sessions is normally mandatory. Other kinds of employee personal development classes are optional, and these could include seminars in team leadership, project planning, or new innovations in a given industry. Employees who attend these optional courses and meetings are those with a good deal of interest in their fields, and they are sometimes among their bosses' first choices for pay increases or promotions.
Companies without formal training seminars or classes for employee personal development often encourage their employees to formulate their own plans that will help them along in their career paths. These types of plans often list an employee's competencies and shortcomings along with specific steps to improve weaker skills. A development plan also usually has a time frame for each employee to make those improvements. At least one member of the management team may review these employee goals periodically to evaluate progress and offer feedback. Employees who meet their goals successfully are often good candidates for added job responsibilities as well.