Learning and Development: The importance of mindset and rewarding top talent

Kate Frazer
By Kate Frazer | 19 August 2022
Kate Frazer. Image: Supplied

Kate Frazer, Learning & Development Consultant, Half Dome

Mindset courses and reward-based learning and development are the new flexible workplace practices. Employees are looking for more than just a good salary and the option to work from home.

In an industry where the average annual job turnover rate is 34%*, there has been lots of chatter about the talent crunch we face and the cost of constantly rehiring and
onboarding new staff. Don’t get me wrong – pay people what they’re worth but reward them with the Learning & Development opportunities they deserve. Now’s the time to think outside the box.

A gentle reminder in case you’d forgotten, a global pandemic is floating around – the Covid fatigue is real, and our brains are exploding from exhaustion. Investing in people, so they have the capacity to fulfill their potential, lead from within and be resilient in the face of change is crucial in ensuring retention of quality employees and a counterpunch to the talent crunch.

Following a rigorous audit of the learning and development opportunities within the media industry, I discovered stock-standard courses in feedback, building relationships and effective communication or ‘soft skills’ as they are so often referred, whilst crucial, are no longer cutting it with the organisations who want to have a real impact on the
lives of their people. Brave businesses are pioneering new initiatives and aren’t afraid to invest by rewarding top talent.

Unsurprisingly, coming off the back of multiple lockdowns, Mental Health First Aid Training [MHFA] is trending and rather quickly becoming an expectation of employment, with some organisations now training 100% of staff. An impressive improvement, but it’s time we got even more serious about our people.

People skills or behavioural interactions a person may need to do their job effectively, but not directly related to the technical aspects of their role are being surpassed by the growing importance in Mindset Training.

A complement to MHFA training and essential element in any L&D program, Mindset training courses are some of the best options to ensure employees are happier and more confident with a performance [growth] mindset, every day by increasing resilience and improving the ability to adapt to change. This is the unicorn in a bespoke learning and development program.

When a leader is willing to be vulnerable and empathetic within the wider organisation, a small shift in perspective occurs, allowing a team to bond over a shared experience and develop stronger, long-lasting relationships. This encourages these same employees who may have jumped ship had circumstances been different, to stay and be rewarded through a positive and fulfilling workplace culture.

Understanding who we are, what we want and what motivates us are the underlying principles in the Mojo Crowe mindset Course. Developed by Director, Ben Crowe, embracing your weird and embedding it in practice are concepts that would’ve been scoffed at less than 10 years ago, but are now, changing lives.

One in five people will experience a common mental illness in their lifetime – and this stat is from over 10 years ago. In my experience, today it’s much higher. So, the challenge we face is two-fold: both preventative and reactive.

MHFA training is an important but reactive tool, with significant evidence to prove it has aided in identifying mental ill health and assisting people to get the help they need, but it’s about time we focussed on prevention. Just as athletes train to perform, we need to train our brains for the rigour of the workplace; this is where the mindset course comes in. Fast forward 10 years, I hope mindset training is as commonplace as going to the gym.

Similarly, rewarding top talent through learning and development is a key initiative in talent retention. Seeing star employees thrive and develop skills above and beyond their everyday is not only phenomenal career development but is of huge benefit to businesses moving forward. Organisations are beginning to be exposed for their lack of expenditure in this area as bespoke people skills courses and mindset training gain traction both in practice and as employees look beyond salary and flexible workplace practices.

Source: * MFA, Media and Marketing industry benchmark, September 2020 - September 2021

Kate Frazer is a Learning and Development Consultant at Half Dome, a trained Mental Health First Aid Instructor and a secondary school teacher.

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