Why Emphasising Personal Development is Key to CEO Success

It goes without saying that every single company wants to succeed on a commercial level.

But it’s also important to remember that behind every successful company is a team of individuals on a lifetime journey of personal growth and development.

Loren Burgess, HR Coordinator and Hiring Manager at Kene Partners, explains that by investing in and helping to nurture employees’ goals on both a career and personal level, companies can trigger a positive cycle of success, both for the individual employees, and the company as a whole.

Cycle of success

When you hire top talent that is ambitious, dedicated and tenacious, it comes as no surprise that they’re not going to be content with just actioning the day to day responsibilities. They are always striving for the next step in their career, determined to challenge themselves and continuously develop their skills and experience. With this assertive and ambitious vision motivated by hiring the most talented experts in the industry, a positive cyclical model can be initiated to fuel company success. Naturally, with a skilled team in place that provides outstanding service to clients, this, in turn, drives new business development to win more established clients. An impressive client list therefore attracts new expert talent to join the business – thus triggering this positive, repetitive cycle of success.

With that in mind, companies must be ahead of the game in identifying learning and development opportunities to keep employees hungry to acquire new skills and motivated to deliver excellent service to clients. Whether that’s through leadership training, a course in HR or marketing, companies should continually invest in regular training for employees to expand their knowledge and broaden the business’ offering.

Personal ambition: Working 5 to 9

The other factor that comes into play when you’re hiring expert talent in the industry is that not only will they have career aspirations, but also personal ambitions to fulfil. One of the ways a company can help its staff to achieve this balance is through flexible working. With a culture that is predicated on trust and flexibility, staff can feel empowered to perform effectively and efficiently in their role and also manage their time to create an optimum work/life balance to realise personal goals.

Essentially, as long as the job is done to a high standard, it shouldn’t matter where or at what time of day the job is done. Of course, there have to be boundaries set to ensure that the scheme is respected, that teamwork can still flourish and that everyone is benefitting. But with initiatives in place such as co-working spaces in several locations, employees can work around ambitions and commitments. Instead of wasting time figuring out how to commute to the office, then on to another location to start their course on time, they can work from home or from a nearby co-working space first – a far more efficient and beneficial way of working.

Shared knowledge

In addition to dedicated personal courses and training development, knowledge sharing is also an invaluable tool to upskill team members, supporting the overall culture and augmenting a business’ service portfolio. For example, lunch and learn sessions get the entire team together where one person can impart knowledge and wisdom on a particular topic. That might be sales psychology, tips and tricks to understand the client’s objectives or even advice around invoicing. It can enable more of the team to provide support on areas that they wouldn’t have been able to previously, or get more involved in an area of the business they might not have considered before.


Performance targets are a common measurable factor used across most industries, but are typically implemented for work goals, not often used for personal achievements. One effective method for team coaching and mentoring is the GROW model which stands for; Goal, Reality, Obstacle/Opportunity and Way forward. These specific steps involve setting clear professional and personal targets, assessing how far away the individual is from achieving it, the obstacles currently in place and converting them into actionable steps in order to reach that goal.

One of the ideas behind this method is that by sharing your intentions with someone and making them a verbal reality, you’re more likely to take responsibility for them and be more accountable for your actions. This is well practised in a professional capacity, but can be very effective for personal plans as well. By combining this practice with regular one to ones, it allows managers to develop better working relationships with employees by finding out what makes them tick. It also demonstrates that the company genuinely cares about people outside of work; it’s not all about the day to day but supporting a team throughout their individual journeys and helping to build loyalty.

Continuous improvement

Culture is something that is constantly evolving for all organisations. There are numerous elements at play that influence it, from internal factors such as new hires and clients, or changes in business strategy, to external factors such as the economic landscape. Companies must not be complacent when it comes to their culture, continuous analysis and improvement on the current model is essential, not just to keep up with the needs and demands of current employees, but to stay ahead of the competition to attract the brightest minds in the industry.

Investing in your staff shows how much you value them and for the employee, knowing that they are worth their salary will make them want to prove it by working to the best of their abilities. If a company can satisfy its teams’ needs for growth, both in the workplace and in personal time, a circular loop of success can be achieved to drive the company forward.

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