If the boss has canceled your training and your next trip out of town to a conference, maybe you're working for the wrong firm. While 26 percent of 150 large company senior executives recently surveyed by Accountemps said they'd cut back on professional development over the past year, slightly more, 28 percent said they'd increased training.
The executives were asked: "Compared to 12 months ago, how, if at all, have your company's professional development programs changed?" The largest group, 45 percent, said their programs hadn't changed.
Is it possible that training is a barometer of company health as well as your career future? After all, it doesn't make sense to invest in professional development if the firm is going under, or to send someone to Kansas City for a trade conference if they're about to get the ax.
Max Messmer, chairman of Accountemps and author of Human Resources Kit For Dummies, says employers should think twice before making professional development cuts. "While employers may be tempted to eliminate or scale back training in challenging times," he says, "Skimping on employee education can dull your firm's competitive edge and undermine your recruitment and retention efforts."
Plus, training makes employees more loyal. "Employees who feel their company is invested in their careers will be more motivated to perform at a high level and less likely to resign when an improving economy spurs new job opportunities," Messmer says.