At this point it’s clear. Those people in your organizations, the ones you go to for all your questions about how to get things done, they’re starting to retire. And while you try to get them to train those who will take their place, you know most of that information will disappear forever. You’ve known it was coming, but a solution just hasn’t been easy.
Additionally, if you don’t do a good job retaining high performers in your organization, that knowledge drain will hurt you in unimaginable ways.
What if it turns out that there is one solution to both problems?
Let’s start with the basic question – how do we capture what the best people, and those who know how to get things done, know and do? And then, once we know what that is, how can we share it with those who need to know?
1) Create a role-based competency model
The answer is simple. You use your high performers, and those with valuable expertise, to create a competency model. Very simply, a competency model describes what it looks like to be great in each role. It defines the skills and the knowledge required to execute their part of corporate strategy.
In this way, you capture all the critical nuances of what people do to be successful. This may include with whom they build relationships, what process steps they take, and what tools they’ve created to ensure repeatable success.
Now you know what they know and do to get things done. And you probably have informal resources you’ve collected during the process that can serve as competency-based learning for others. How do you share it with those who need to know?
2) Make your competency model actionable
You make that competency model actionable in a competency assessment tool/skills assessment system.
This gives everyone in that role the ability to see what great looks like, via a competency assessment, from their first day in the job (onboarding).
It gives people in that role the ability to compare their skills to “good” and “great” and identify what gaps they have (individual skill development), driving intrinsic motivation to change.
It gives people who are not yet in that role the ability to compare their skills and identify what gaps they have (career planning).
It gives hiring managers the ability to fine tune who they hire (recruiting).
3) Leverage intrinsic motivation to change
You also want to connect each competency model to competency-based learning and automate that connection. In this way, you can provide personalized learning to empower people to close their own skill gaps.
What’s more, providing that kind of employee empowerment will make it more likely that your high performers will stay. They will know how to close their skill gaps, and how they can prepare for other roles in the organization that may suit them. They get recognition for contributing to the professional development of other employees.
If you want to capture knowledge from employees before they leave, either because they have tremendous experience or are high performers:
Use them to build a competency model
Make that competency model actionable in a competency assessment tool/skills assessment system
Leverage personalized learning to empower people to close their own gaps and drive their retention
That way, each employee knows how to become a high performer… for the job they have or the job they want. They have a detailed plan they believe will get them there. They are in control. They will want to stay.