Employee career growth is a key undercurrent to employee experience (EX). A time will come where we can easily differentiate and assign value to those businesses who instill growth into EX. But for now, with EX still in its infancy, those who have moulded their business around employee growth, sit with a key positioning differentiator. A true magnet for attracting and retaining talent.
An employee growth framework (EGF) is the compass or tool to navigate one's growth journey with a business. Growth should be built into the business and central to our employee value proposition. The EGF functions as a mechanism to help employees (and the business) develop a game plan: for employees to develop their game plan for career growth, and for the business, to develop a strategy around how employee growth aligns with business growth. Because “When you playing a game you love you want to keep playing it” - you don't become a better chess player by playing the game the same way and against amateurs. The joy is in the challenge and growth that comes with advancing. And interestingly, in a game of chess, what sets amateurs apart from grand masters is the number of moves they have planned. An EGF is used in a similar manner, some will plan and follow the journey, and well, others may be ok staying put. So the framework has nothing to do with years, but rather the skills, experience, and ability developed, in order to progress.
When viewing the EGF as a game plan, it means we are facilitating the ability for employees (and business) to work out a strategy for growth, in advance.
As with any game, when creating an EGF we need to establish the rules/guidelines of engagement. These need to align with the business strategy. As people advance, does this mean you can charge a premium for their work? Does it mean incentives/rewards/salary increases - as many expect it to mean this. How will the business carry this growth and remain profitable?
It provides the direction & strategy to get there. And by 'get there' it may mean titles, or some sort of indication of achievement - this is an inherent human need.
Growth initiatives/support are required to support the milestones, which may be training, mentorship, various things to help facilitate this. Remember the business wants them to advance so that the business is also more successful because of it (we need to make sure it is).
Measurement, evaluation, reward - we need to decide how we measure and evaluate (might be project proof, etc to validate advancement).
Alignment to business strategy & growth (we mentioned this a few times but we cant have the business being less profitable because of it, for example)
For the design led business, creating your EGF should be tackled like we do for all great design, our holy grail, HCD (human centered design). It starts with the employee and collaborating to get it right, in the truest sense of co-create & co-design. Get your EGF right and enhance your EX journey. Its a no-brainer for your business strategy.