Designing a Talent Development Strategy to Support the Organization’s Goals with Deborah Decker

Organizations that have a formal talent development strategy have a strong advantage over those that don’t, including increased employee retention, engagement, and productivity. This session will cover how to design a talent development strategy that drives organizational results through skills development, career development, and leadership development.

Luis Malbas  
All right. Hello, everybody, welcome. Sorry, we are running a little bit late or a lot late. But um, we finally got we were able to get Deborah. And we were having some issues, I think with Chrome. And, and, and also just getting the slides to go. And we actually don't even know exactly what fixed it. So I do know that air meat and chrome are little, don't always play well with each other. So just keep that in mind. If you're ever presenting or participating in any of these air meet events. That's one of the things you got to check out. It's just make sure you're running the latest chrome version. But that said, we do have our next guest Deborah Decker here and ready to share with us about designing a talent development strategy to support your organization's goals, or the organization's goals. And just a little bit about Deborah Deborah has over 25 years experience in l&d. She enjoys supporting other others in doing doing this. Just mutinous. And growing their career, she is especially passionate about using learning technologies to create engaging activities and elearning and virtual instructor led workshops. I know Deborah has actually presented with TL DC before before, Deborah actually played d&d with us a couple events ago in our Dungeons and Dragons event that we had. And Deborah, let's see, I just muted you. So I'm going to unmute you now, oops. Or maybe you need to unmute yourself. And then I'll be controlling the slides for Deborah. So I'm just going to go ahead and let you take away. I'm just going to hide my, my video and audio from the from the event and let you take over.

Deborah Decker  
All right. Thank you, Louis. Apologies to you all. I appreciate your patience. Louis and I were having a lot of fun backstage and trying to figure this out. But we are finally here. So Louis is going to run my slides. Before we move to the next slide. I am very excited to be here. It's been a while since I've presented at a TL DC event. I do want to start off by saying a huge thank you to Luis as always for bringing us together as a community to learn from each other. I know how much time and effort goes into planning these types of events. So thank you, Louis. We are We are so glad we appreciate you so much. So as was mentioned, I am the director of learning experience at la care. We are a public health plan that serves that serves Los Angeles County's low income and most vulnerable communities. Currently, we have 1.7 million members located only in the Los Angeles County area. la cara has approximately 2400 employees and I lead a team of 13 incredibly talented learning experience and talent development professionals. In this session, my goal is to share with you some some general best practices for creating a talent development strategy, along with some examples of things we've done at La Kerr. And I also want to note that I geared this session toward those who have never developed a talent strategy or who are really in the beginning stages. So I know that many of you are experienced talent development practitioners. So I look forward to having you chime in in the chat panel to add in your expertise as well. And Lewis has this presentation so he will include it on the website along with the recording. Next slide was

there we go. And I did have some animations, but because it's in a PDF form, it's going to be a little bit different. But before we get into designing a talent development strategy, I wanted to make sure we're all talking about the same thing when we refer to talent development in chat what are some things that come to mind when you hear talent development?

Continuing Education Hey Kim, it's great to see you. Yeah, it is very much adult adult education. I upskilling reskilling absolutely

talent pipeline. Absolutely. Bobby that is definitely a big part of it and career pathing So, for our purposes today, I chose to use it The ATD definition of talent development, which is a set of practical capabilities, for driving organizational results by creating the processes, systems and frameworks that advanced training and development strategies, succession planning, and learning opportunities, so, I feel like that's a pretty global all encompassing, definition and description. Some of the things that can talent development can include you all have mentioned in chat, skills development, such as upscaling and rescaling our employees career development, leadership development, change management, preparing the workforce for the future, which is often unknown. mentoring programs high potential programs, diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging, programs and initiatives, succession planning, and organizational culture just to name a few. Your organization's talent development strategy may or may not include all of these, and there may be some that aren't even listed here. This next slide, please. So just a quick history lesson, the evolution from training to talent development. Actually, the advent of corporate the corporate training function began in the 1800s when an American mechanical engineer named Frederick Winslow Taylor introduced a system of scientific management, which is referred to as Taylorism, in which it was the function of the factory managers to determine how a job or tasks should be performed, and to provide the proper training, you know, they had certain everybody had to do it exactly the same way to ensure whatever the product coming off that line was, was exactly the same as the next one. So and then the training once it was determined, you know exactly what the steps were that training was typically conducted by the foreman. The training function became more formalized during World War Two, when skilled factory workers had to go serve in the military, opening up the need to train new workers. And then our industry shift in from training to talent development can really be seen in the different title innovations in one of our largest industry organizations currently called a TD. It was originally the American Society of talent directors established in 1943 by 15 men with the goal of raising the standards for the industrial training profession. And at that time, it was largely for factory workers. In 1964, the name was changed the American Society for Training and Development to be more inclusive of all training professionals, not just vectors. And in 2014, the name change to its current name, the Association for Talent develop development to encompass the broader responsibilities we all have beyond just training our next slide lists.

So why do organizations need to develop a talent development strategy? Today, employees expect career development, leaders expect leadership development and companies that offer these have an advantage over companies that don't. And while Henry Ford has a great point here about training employees and having them leave, in today's world, it is often the opposite employees who have development opportunities tend to stay within the organization. Gallup research shows that 87% of millennials, which is the largest generational group in the workforce, today, value career development. And when companies invest in a formal talent development strategy, it does lead to increase retention, engagement and productivity. Also, following on what Jeremy talked about, if you were in the earlier session, when we have a strategy in place is easier to be more transformational. Versus transactional. I saw several of you who are in that session, say that you're in your current role, you tend to focus more on the transactional because that is the organization's organization's need. And I doubt that any talent development team is ever going to completely get away from that transactional piece. I think I call it in my organization putting out fires. I think that's a scientific term, right? We just, you know, trying to be reactive sometimes. However, when we have a strategy in place, we are able to be proactive more of the time than reactive. So those are the pros. I could not come up with any cons be interested to see if you all have any, any good reasons for not having a talent development, development strategy and not developing our employees. Yeah, Kim, that's a great point. Yeah, training, I think there is always going to be that training component, where people have to follow a certain set of a certain way of doing things a certain set of steps, which is different from you know, looking at our entire A talent development strategy, but thank you for that. Louis Next slide. So organizations need people with the skills to do their jobs. Well, in order for the organization to achieve its mission, realize its vision, and meet its goals. For example, if your company has a product to sell, and your salespeople aren't very good at selling, your company isn't going to do very well, right? You're gonna have to train those salespeople in order for the company to meet its bottom line and beat its competition. And so you could respond to this with well, then we just need to hire people with the right skills, right? Simple. And that is definitely an important initial first step. However, the lifecycle for skills in typical corporate jobs today is getting shorter, and shorter. Employees will eventually and often sooner than later need to develop new skills to keep up take, for example, the salespeople we just talked about, they might have the right skills today when we hire them. But as our company comes out with a newer and better version of the product, those salespeople are going to need to be retrained. So I'm not going to go into a deep dive into talent acquisition strategy right now, today. But it is important to note that sometimes the person with the best skills isn't necessarily the right fit for attitude, you could find a candidate who is perfect on paper. But once you interview them, or worse, hire them, you realize they aren't a good cultural fit, they don't work well with their teammates, they don't respect their leaders, they believe they are above performing certain tasks, we've all worked with that person at one time or another, right? It is much better to hire the person with some of the skills who has a great attitude, who is willing to learn who wants to collaborate with teammates, and then provide them the training to develop the skills they are lacking. And oftentimes, we have a team that's already in place. But as needs change, we may realize that certain skills are no longer needed and other skills are a smart strategy, especially where a job role is being eliminated is to look at what skills are transferable to another role. And then retrain the employee for that role. Recently, one of our departments at la care changed the organizational structure to add roles that employees could promote into, they realized that they had many jobs that were at the same level. And that in order for people to move up into a more challenging role, they needed to move to another department, or worse leave the company. And so by eliminating some of the more entry level roles and creating a higher level roles with more responsibility, they're able to keep that talent within the department. And I'm just checking the chat. Yes, easier to train skills than mindsets. Absolutely. Thank you for that Trish. Let's go the next slide was.

So there are various approaches you can take in developing your talent development strategy, I like to start by identifying where it is we want to end up and looking at the organization's goals, mission and vision, then we need to look at where we are today. And create a roadmap to get to our desired destination, and then identify the resources that we're going to need along the way. So we're gonna take a look at each one of these individually. Next slide lists. So this slide has la care's mission, vision and goals for some companies. The mission is to deliver a high quality product or increase membership or expand into new territories or otherwise grow the company, your talent development strategy is going to look different depending on your organization's goals. So for la care, our mission is to provide access to quality health care for Los Angeles County's vulnerable and low income communities and residents and to support the safety net required to achieve that purpose. Our vision is a healthy community in which all have access to the health care they need, regardless of income, socio economic status, race, ethnicity, etc. And so we have a lot of goals, a lot of enterprise goals. The goals here are the ones that really pertain to my team, the learning experience team. So, the goal la care wants to ensure members receive excellent care and that their care is managed in a manner that promotes good health outcomes and that care is accessible to all members. So the goals that will support that the people development goals are support that support and sustain a diverse and skilled workforce and plan for future needs. It's so the way my team is addressing that is through career development, career mapping, and providing leadership development for our leaders. The second one conduct session planning particularly at the leadership level, this succession planning actually falls under the purview of our organizational effectiveness team. However, when they identify those successors, it is my team's role to support them with the skills, knowledge and attitudes PSAs that they need to step into those roles and be effective. Maintaining a diverse and inclusive workforce, validated by data analysis to model Ellie cares commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion. When I started up la care in 2021, our the strategy was to hire a vendor to come in and do that type of training. We realized through data analysis, that it wasn't as effective as it could be. And so recently, we were able to hire, just in fact, back in July, a dedicated senior program manager over diversity, equity inclusion to help us meet that need. And so far, it is proving to be a better strategy. Let's see our managed care, improving managed care acumen amongst staff. Mostly, we do that through asynchronous elearning modules, and then promote retention of staff in an evolving work environment. We do that again, through career development, leadership development, we also use gallops Clifton Strengths Assessment, to help teams focus on leveraging each other's strengths. Just checking to see if I've missed anything. Yeah, Gabby has a great point, it is really hard to feel invested in development conversations. When there's really nowhere you're nowhere to go. Right. I'm getting developed now what you know, there's, you know, I'm at my glass ceiling. Great point. Thank you for that Gabby Lewis, next slide. So since we're starting with the end in mind, how are we going to get there, you need to create a roadmap. And wherever you're starting from, you're going to need to take some time to assess where your organization is at. So depending on your situation, you might need to spend a few days, a few weeks or a few months assessing your current state when I joined la care in 2021, I needed to take time to get to know my team to get to know their capabilities to get to know what type of work they were passionate about the programs that we were currently delivering the products and platforms that we were currently paying for. So this really this first part really is about laying the foundation for your success. So it took me about two months to really get to know the team. And you know what we were doing, what was working, what wasn't working. And so about two months spent on that prior to even starting to develop a strategy, you may already have your team in place, and if so it's most likely going to take less time to develop a strategy. Although sometimes we can get caught up in that status quo. And it's harder to see what's not working. If you've been in it for a while, you're also going to need to determine your timeline. And we chose a three year timeline, because it aligned with La care's vision 2020 For three year strategy, and best next year is 2024. So we are in our third year of this strategy. It is also important to make sure your team is on board and that they believe it can be done. So for me as I was, you know, getting buy in on the strategy, I started with the people managers and program managers who reported to me to get their input on strategy, then we rolled it out to the rest of the team to get their input. So everyone had input on the strategy. It was an ambitious strategy to transform how learning and development was done to La La Kerr. And there were team members who were skeptical that we could do it. But fortunately, they they trusted me. The additional vantage of my hiring manager brought me in specifically to transform the learning culture at la care. So I didn't have to work hard to get buy in from management. But at the end of year one of the 12 original goals we set for ourselves as the learning experience team. We completed we did not complete only one of them, and that one was in progress, but it had to take a backseat to other organizational needs we hadn't planned for and couldn't have foreseen. I have a few examples but because we started a bit late, I may need to just come back to them. So Uh, Lewis, let's move on to the next slide for now. So again, starting with the end in mind, once you know your team, and once you know your goal, where you want to end up, you need to figure out what resources you need. So to accomplish your talent development strategy, there are specific skills you're going to need on your team. And then you'll need learning content to develop the talent in your organization. Next slide. So your content strategy you've, most of you probably heard of the build, borrow by strategy. So here we are going to apply it to our learning content strategy. We're gonna start with build. Many organizations have an internal learning and development department, or learning experience department as mine is called with skilled learning experienced designers or instructional designers who design and develop instructor led and elearning courses to meet a specific need, as identified through a needs analysis. So of these three options built by build is probably the heaviest lift in terms of time and resources. However, it is the best option when you need a custom solution tailored to your own organization. The second option is to borrow content from non proprietary sources found on the internet. YouTube videos, Ted Talks. Oftentimes, industry websites provide regulatory information that we need for our courses and for training. For example, when we need to create a course, around Medicare, we refer to the website for the most up to date information. I know many of us who are training healthcare professionals during COVID, frequently referred to the website. At la care, we have a 12 month long management certificate program for individual contributors who want to move into a management role. And one of the topics we cover those 12 months is there to lead the book by Brene. Brown, and we use the workbook and videos from her dare to lead hub on her website, free content. It's the participants in that program, love it, and really lead into the you know, vulnerability. But the exercises in the workbook, the workbook is free. There's videos, there's other support content on there, and it's free. If you wanted to provide a workshop on design thinking, Stanford's DDOT School provides a starter kit with everything you need to run a highly interactive three hour virtual workshop, and even classroom Music Playlist included. So there are places you know, there's a lot of things out there that you can easily borrow. It's obviously the least expensive, expensive option in terms of costs in terms of money, however, it will still take time to curate it and adapt it to your specific your organization's specific needs. And then finally,

my apologies. Finally, if you don't have the internal resources to create your own content, and you can't find what you need for free, you're probably going to need to purchase your learning content solution. So there are elearning vendors that provide off the shelf content, and they can create custom courses for you. These are the most expensive option. However, if you don't have time, if you need something quickly, don't have the resources, develop it in house, this may be the best option. Also, content platforms are a great way to provide a range of content from skills development to software training, to leadership development, I only care we use a mixture of build, borrow, buy, we do have a team of learning experienced designers who design and develop courses we borrow as I said from Brene, Brown, the Stanford DDOT, school, YouTube TED talks, etc. And we do purchase off the shelf content typically for our compliance training. And thank you summer for putting that in the chat or the DDOT school. I do have a slide at the end with resources. And that is in there as well. But thank you for sharing it in chat. So we use a combination of off the shelf content for career development and skills development, we use skill software Scipio platform, which has content mapped to specific job roles in our organizations such as customer service center, different, you know, departments, and we use that a lot for skills development. We use Harvard management or in the Franklin Covey Impact Program for our leadership development programs. So that's the content strategy we use to meet our our talent development needs. And next slide. Your talent development team. Once you've identified your strategy, you need to make sure that you have the skills you need. So that was one of the inventories I took when I joined La Kerr was what skills do we have? What skills are we lacking? And how can we get those the skills that we identified that we needed to execute our strategy, learning experience, design, facilitator slash producer for virtual webinars, because when I joined, everything was virtual, the entire organization was remote. And we still primarily use WebEx, the virtual platform to deliver our new employee orientation or leadership development, a lot of our skills training, that is instructor led is virtual. So we have facilitators, we did not have a producer, we actually had a couple of our learning experience designers take a I forget what the company was, but they did a master virtual producer certificate where they got those skills and actually helped coach other people on the team to be good producers, learning technologies, you really cannot survive in today's world without people who can use the technology around learning. Of course, leadership development skills, diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging. As I said, we recently added that one to our team, data analytics, we've had to really develop that skill on our team. And program management is another skill that we identified that we had, you know, we were somewhat skilled, but have invested in developing that skill as well. I'm gonna just quickly check the chat, because I'm going back and forth between my presentation, a facilitator, Bobby, I like that, like that one. Thank you. I think I might still. All right, next slide. employee development begins with leadership development. And this kind of again, goes back to what Jeremy was talking about earlier. In being transformational versus transactional, we need to develop our leaders, they need to be able to lead their people successfully, develop their employees, and managing and manage their teams effectively. If you are like me, in the talent development function, we get requests from the organization to for support in developing their staff, right, you need to train my staff on XYZ. And my response is often no, you need to train your staff on XYZ, my, my team does not know how to do that job. But as the manager over those people, really it is your job not to do the work, but to train them on how to do the work. So typically, they're looking for communication skills, how to manage conflict, team building a lot of soft skills. And although they're called soft skills, I think they are the hardest skills to master. But in most organizations, the talent development team is not set up to coach individuals, one on one or to provide individual training or even to coach small teams that that really is the role of the manager. So when I get requests like these, and I have to develop a training project plan, it typically includes as the first step, having the manager participate in leadership development, to equip them with the skills that they need to develop their employees, and then reassess the team's training needs because a lot of times once a manager understands that developing their employees is their responsibility. And they feel confident that they have the skills to do it and support it. The talent development team can then focus on developing their team in the areas that are outside the managers scope and providing content for that. So this is our approach the targeted programs here This is La cares approach to leadership development, we have four programs, one is targeted to our newly hired newly promoted first time managers, that gives them you know, the basic skills, how do you hold a meeting? How do you have one on ones, you know, basic leadership development, our frontline managers, the people who manage individual contributors, who are, you know, really not doing the work, but managing the work through those employees. Then we have our middle middle managers who have people managers reporting to them. So managing managers is a different skill from managing individual contributors. And then finally, our senior leaders who lead entire departments in the focus with them is more on strategy and planning and strategic thinking. So that is our approach to leadership development. Louis, next slide. And I think this is probably one of the most important things in executing a talent development strategy is keeping up with industry research trends and best practices. These should really help inform your strategy. It is just important for us as talent development professionals to be upskilling ourselves as it is for us to be upskilling employees and other departments. We need to know what the current research says about trends and industry best practices. So here's a list of some of the reports that are available annually. I know there are others as well. None of the ones that are on here require a membership to the organization. Although usually to get the report they'll ask for your work, email or INFO. Or if you participated, or they asked you to participate in the survey to get the free report afterwards. verson does his Josh version does his HR predictions report which includes a large section on learning development. The E Learning industry does the future of work report and culture trends. Donald H. Taylor's global Sentiment Survey for learning and development. I know many of you participate in that it oh, he opened that up yesterday. If you follow him on LinkedIn, or x, formerly known as Twitter, you'll see that he's already soliciting responses for that survey. If you don't follow him, I highly recommend that you do a lot of great information in that GSS survey. And what's great about it is it comes from us it actually comes from the people doing the work. Let's see. LinkedIn learning does an annual report state of the global Gallup state of the global workplace always includes a Learning Development section and talent development section. Tier one training industry magazines, trends, and I see it spelled perspectives where I'm able to fix that. And then a UWS annual workplace learning trends report. These are all great ways to get information about, you know, what's current, what's predicted in the future, and that should help inform your strategy. And next slide Lewis.

Yeah, soft skills definition. Does. definition has changed a lot. I agree. Bobby says What is everyone calling soft skills today, power skills, essential skills, non technical skills. There are a lot of descriptors out there. All right. And here's a few resources. If you want to take a deeper dive into this a TD does have their talent development capability model you can actually if you're a member of ATP, you can go and take the assessment, see where you are at and then you know, get a report. And then of course they do offer for a price. That core skills. Yeah, Cindy, definitely that would work. atds laybys wrote a TDS action guide to talent development a great place to start. Brandon Carson. I love his book, Allen DS playbook for the digital age. He really goes through how to set up your teams for success and how to create a talent development strategy. And he is it specifically is focused on technology. Jim Collins, Good to Great Why Some Companies Make the Leap and others don't. Simon Synnex the infinite game, which is really about not having a short term thinking strategy, you've probably met that CEO who just comes in he wants to make a name for himself or herself. You know, quickly turn the company around, make their money sell it get out. That is very short term thinking. He focuses on in this book on the infinite game really having legacy and the Brene Brown, I can put that one in the chat summer. And then of course the link to the Stanford d dot school starter kit. So Louis, it looks like even even it's starting late, we were able to get through all of it. I had to cut down some of my examples. But if anyone has questions or wants to hear more about strategy at la care, reach out to me I'm on LinkedIn can reach out to me directly. Probably LinkedIn would be the best let me put my LinkedIn I think I'm connected to a lot of you and then Brene Brown split psyched.

I will go ahead and put that in the chat.

myself in order for you to talk so let me do that. Or you can mute.

Luis Malbas  
Yeah, you can check to see are we getting any echo there? All right. Hopefully everyone can hear me Wow. That was great. Deborah, thank you so much. Let's see here. Can you hear me okay? Yeah, yeah. Okay. Good. All right, ya know, what a resource storage lie Jack is you have so many great things. And this is going to be great, great reporting for the people. So, yeah, fantastic. I'm not seeing any questions in QA.

Let's see looking to see and I don't have anything else, really to call out, I think. I think this is great. Thank you so much for sharing with us, Deborah.

Deborah Decker  
Let me go ahead and put my link in. Chat. If you are not connected, please reach out to me connect with me on LinkedIn. I know many of you have already. We will share the deck. Lewis has the deck. He's going to share the PDF on the TLC website. I don't see any other questions. All right. Thank you all for being here and being patient as we got started a little bit late. And thank you again, Luis, for hosting this. I look forward to seeing the rest of the presentations. Absolutely.

Luis Malbas  
Thank you so much for participating and being the speaker Deborah, you're always so wonderful. And everybody don't forget Joe pull the keynote in about an hour. I am I met Joe way back when I was I feel like I was a kid way back when probably just dating myself there. But I'm so excited that he's going to be part of our one of our events. And so we'll see everybody in the next one in about an hour. Thanks. All right, everybody. We're gonna close it out. And we'll see in the next one.

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