By Tom Monaghan, PGA of Canada, President, Monaghan Golf Group
The Cornerstone of a Successful Business
For the last 3 years, Monaghan Golf Group has invested in a professional development program for our senior management staff. I call this program an investment because that is exactly what it is - an investment in our talent. Having well-developed employees is one of the cornerstones of a successful business.
Our professional development program emerged from many sessions with Mark Thompson of McKinley Solutions who made this process very easy and has proven to offer an invaluable service. Most recently, Mark worked with our staff for two days to develop our company’s mission, clarify our vision statement and identify our core values. It is upon this philosophy and values that we have formed our program. Making this process a staff-wide enterprise not only fosters a cohesive and team-focused mindset but lends employees experience in developing a mission and vision statement which they can take with them as a skill set to other career opportunities.
Through our work with McKinley Solutions we have used tools to measure the individual and group Life Styles Index (LSI) of our managers. These tools identify the underlying thoughts and motivations that guide each individual’s behaviour. This data has been a tremendous help in highlighting staff strengths and weaknesses in order for us to then build effective teams around our senior managers; it has also given us a starting point for individual coaching programs for senior managers. Investing in these tools have helped us hire and retain loyal and dedicated employees at every level.
Further professional development with our team has also included educating staff in effective communication during “crucial conversations”, an important quality in developing a first-rate leadership team. Dealing with challenging customers and diffusing workplace conflicts is a valuable tool for employees and employers alike.
Investing in a professional development program for any size company will reap benefits however a company does not have to spend thousands of dollars on a consultant. Researching topics of interest and meeting with key staff to discuss these topics is a great start. Some companies ask employees to read a specific business book and convene to discuss it and its value to the organization. Also, the PGA of Canada offers excellent professional development content (webinars, podcasts, etc.) to its members. No matter what form of professional development you choose, the key is to initiate something. Employees feel more connected to your company and will bring more value to your organization through the professional development they attain.