Mike Lewis, entrepreneur and author, recently collaborated with Penn Foster Education in an informative and motivational webinar titled “Make Your Jump.” Lewis, a graduate of Dartmouth, left a prestigious job at a venture capital firm to pursue his passion—playing squash professionally. He teamed up with a panel of diverse Penn Foster students to share their stories and speak to the barriers that often hold them back from tackling their career goals. Though the insights gleaned from the conversation between Lewis and Penn Foster students Rocco, Brittney, and Kathy encourage other students and peers to make the jump toward the career they want, there are a few key takeaways that can inform the way employers approach career development for their employees.
Self-doubt seems to be an essential part of the human condition; self-doubt can also hold back otherwise talented and intelligent employees from advancing and truly impacting their company. Rocco, who has had to do considerable work to get to a place where he pushes past his comfort zone, reminds listeners and webinar attendees that that we’re often our own worst enemies. It’s human nature, but it’s a struggle that can be overcome with employer provided mentorship or leadership programs. Even short “bootcamp” training programs that provide soft skills and the foundations for becoming the best version of themselves can make an impact on a seemingly uninterested employee.
Making a jump toward a new life doesn’t necessarily mean jumping to a new company or career. Many employees are looking to rise through ranks of their workplace but don’t know where to begin. Work to prevent employees stagnate in their current position, like one panelist, Kathy, did for 15 years, by offering career development training and career pathways. By creating pathways for advancement, and coupling them with training programs, your company can retain good employees, while making sure you have strong pipeline of future leadership in place.
You can find the Make Your Jump webinar here! Do the panelists sound like any of your current employees? Are their struggles things that can be addressed in your employees?
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