Get Instant Access
to This Blueprint

Learning And Development icon

Implement Effective Employee Development Planning

Engage employees to own and plan their development.

Managers either don’t see the value of employee development planning or find it an onerous process and therefore don’t make time for it, causing employees to feel underappreciated and disengaged.

Our Advice

Critical Insight

  • If managers do make time for development planning, they think about it from a formal training perspective and fail to consider the many other, more effective, on-the-job forms of development.
  • Although employee development scored as the third-highest priority in the McLean & Company 2015 HR Trends & Priorities Report, its effectiveness ranking sits at 26 out of 31 HR areas.
  • Employees with high development scores are 4.9 times more satisfied with their jobs than those with low development scores.
  • In McLean & Company’s engagement survey, only 49% of employees felt they were encouraged to pursue career development activities.

Impact and Result

  • Effective employee development focuses on having meaningful discussions with employees. Use the McLean & Company employee development planning framework to incorporate ongoing, continuous feedback in a less onerous, more manageable way:
    • Employee drafts their development goals based on manager’s feedback.
    • Manager and employee review development goals and agree on 3-4 goals.
    • Manager provides continual feedback and coaching.
    • Monthly check-in meetings are held to assess progress on goals and provide feedback.

Implement Effective Employee Development Planning

1. Understand the employee development framework

Clarify process and accountabilities for effective employee development planning.

2. Identify development goals

Establish a development goal-setting model to support consistent organizational integration.

3. Identify and evaluate development methods

Identify the mix of experiential, relational, and formal training methods used in support of employee development.

Workshop: Implement Effective Employee Development Planning

Workshops offer an easy way to accelerate your project. If you are unable to do the project yourself, and a Guided Implementation isn't enough, we offer low-cost onsite delivery of our project workshops. We take you through every phase of your project and ensure that you have a roadmap in place to complete your project successfully.

Module 1: Prepare for Effective Employee Development Planning

The Purpose

  • Discuss and identify opportunities and challenges associated with employee development planning.
  • Explore the benefits of implementing a development planning framework that is effective and efficient; identify relevant metrics to measure organizational success.
  • Review the McLean & Company development planning framework.
  • Understand employee and manager accountabilities within the development planning process.
  • Establish the development planning document content to capture and measure employees’ success.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Understand issues to influence stakeholder buy-in for organization-wide development planning.
  • Understanding of the McLean & Company development planning framework and how to use it.
  • Commitment to information to capture in support of measuring employees’ progress towards goal attainment.




Identify employee development challenges

  • Understanding of the challenges faced with having an ineffective or non-existent development planning process and the potential solutions to address these challenges.

Module 2: Implement Effective Employee Development Planning

The Purpose

  • Learn how to create development goals.
  • Explore development methods in the context of a 70-20-10 mix.
  • Learn the McLean & Company 3Cs Feedback model.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Improved goal-setting competencies.
  • Improved awareness of development method impact on development goal attainment.
  • Managers learning how to give meaningful feedback in a way that will support employees’ on-going development.
  • Employees and managers owning their role in the process.




Goal setting using SMART principles

  • Learn and build confidence with a goal-setting model that supports organization integration.

Explore 70-20-10 mix of development methods

  • Learn how to give feedback that encourages development and growth.

Identify & evaluate development methods by goal

  • Improved ability to align development methods with goals for optimum results.

About McLean & Company

McLean & Company is an HR research and advisory firm providing practical solutions to human resources challenges via executable research, tools, diagnostics, and advisory services that have a clear and measurable impact on your business.

What Is a Blueprint?

A blueprint is designed to be a roadmap, containing a methodology and the tools and templates you need to solve your HR problems.

Each blueprint can be accompanied by a Guided Implementation that provides you access to our world-class analysts to help you get through the project.

Need Extra Help?
Try Our Guided Implementations

Get the help you need in this 4-phase advisory process. You'll receive 8 touchpoints with our researchers, all included in your membership.

Guided Implementation #1 - Understand the Employee Development Framework
  • Call #1 - Discuss rationale and pain points for improving the effectiveness of employee development to attain stakeholder buy-in.
  • Call #2 - Review McLean & Company’s Employee Development Framework and learn how to customize it for smooth organization transition.

Guided Implementation #2 - Identify development goals using a consistent model
  • Call #1 - Discuss how to guide development planning using your customized planning framework.
  • Call #2 - Debrief following goal-setting workshop to explore insights, challenges, and next steps.

Guided Implementation #3 - Identify and evaluate development methods
  • Call #1 - Discuss development conversations to address challenges in keeping employees on track.
  • Call #2 - Discuss alignment of development methods with goals to ensure balance and manageability.

Guided Implementation #4 - Support implementation and capacity building
  • Call #1 - Review the McLean & Company training deck and discuss how to customize it for delivery to managers and employees.
  • Call #2 - Debrief on results from training, implementing the employee development process, and metrics to receive feedback on how to address challenges or leverage successes.


  • Hannah Barkley, Human Resources Manager, Ross Video
  • J.D. Lester, Sr. Director of Human Resources, Citizens Property Insurance Corporation
  • Laura Hastings, VP HR & Organizational Development, Rhapsody International Inc.
  • Michael Gokey, Training Program Manager
  • Sheila Plymale, HR Manager, Shelia Plymale
  • Cathy Campbell, Organizational Development Consultant, City of Mississauga
  • Julie Webb, Director, Human Resources and Training, Monarch HealthCare

Search Code: 49689
Published: November 12, 2012
Last Revised: April 20, 2015