Personnel development and the concept of lifelong learning

Anna Albrecht
July 4, 2023

The importance of personnel development

Carol Dweck, an American psychologist and professor at Stanford University, found that people live their lives with a Growth Mindset or a Fixed Mindset. People with a Growth Mindset believe that their talents and abilities will change if they specifically develop them. People with a Fixed Mindset, on the other hand, are certain that their skills, talents, and personality are fixed and stable - like gifts that you either have or don't have. With the idea of having a Growth Mindset comes the possibility of growth. Not in the sense of striving for endless improvement to perfection in every area of life, but in the sense of always being able to expand one's horizons, learn, and embrace new opportunities.

By embracing the possibility of continuous, lifelong learning through the cultivation of a Growth Mindset, one retains the freedom to always choose to change, never to stay the same. In our fast-paced, ambiguous, ever-changing VUCA world, this ability enables one to adapt to situations while remaining true to oneself and one's beliefs. How does one do this? Through learning. Continuous, lifelong learning.

As Carol Dweck noted in a 2016 article published in HBR, people's mindset is often a combination of Growth Mindset and Fixed Mindset. The relationship between these two mindsets is constantly changing based on experience. This means that people can and must be encouraged by circumstances, by other people and by their environment to constantly explore and develop the boundaries of their mindset. Consequently, this is where HR and HR development come into play - which is why HR development is so important: because it supports people in lifelong learning; because it supports employees in developing their potential; because it is the starting point for successful work.

Strategic personnel development or: The strategy of personnel development

Today, many organizations are aware of the importance of encouraging their employees to engage in lifelong learning. Yet they often approach the topic from the wrong side, according to Carol Dweck (HBR, 2016). Communicating visions makes a growth mindset more tangible to employees, but not yet real, and consequently is a nice first step, but not enough. What is needed is action. According to Dweck, employees need to be rewarded for important lessons learned. And that's regardless of how well they achieve their goals. It's also important to encourage collaboration, rather than constant competition, he said. Commitment to each team member's growth, not just in words but in actions, is essential, according to the Carol Dweck.

By providing broadly available development and advancement opportunities for people and teams, organizations can integrate the Growth Mindset with the learning culture that emerges from it into their organizational structure.

The Dorsch Lexikon der Psychologie defines personnel development as an umbrella term for a broad, difficult-to-define spectrum of measures aimed at developing and maintaining the individual professional competence of employees (Dorsch, 2020). The instruments of personnel development are diverse and range from communication training to stress reduction, Qi Gong to software-based solutions. At soft.fact, we provide companies with software-based team development.

Our soft.ware helps you and your team to recognize who you are as a person, how you fit into your team and what you need in your team to be satisfied and efficient in the long term. This social psychological analysis is scientifically based and is constantly being improved. We work for a world where the way work is designed is an expression of people's needs, not the other way around. We strive for healthy organizations and work environments where people's needs and desires do not have to be adjusted based on the definition of their work environment.

Instruments of personnel development: soft.fact has a plan

soft.fact analyzes and completes teams not only in terms of personality, values, roles, communication and ways of working, but also promotes the development of each individual team member. Our new product, the soft.fact Team Development, builds the perfect bridge between the Team Analysis and the team development based on it. We know that change does not happen overnight. That's why our digital mentor accompanies you for over a year and teaches you various key topics such as trust, communication, mindfulness or resilience. The product is based on psychological findings and is constantly being improved through scientific measures, supported by machine learning. We want to help you tap your full potential and open up the possibilities that lifelong learning brings for you and your team.

Ok. But why? Goals in personnel development

Companies support our idea, our vision and our products because they know as well as we do that their success depends on the well-being of their employees. Companies also know that healthy teams with optimal interpersonal fit are more likely to perform better. As the "war for talent" becomes more prevalent, the ability to provide customized software that intelligently addresses the specific workforce development needs of your team is a clear attraction for employees.

That's Team Design:

We design our homes and project a certain image of ourselves by consciously choosing our clothing and personal style. But what about the design of our interpersonal work environment? The Deep Learning algorithm of soft.fact, takes into account your personality, role, values, your WHY, how you communicate and work to design your ideal team.

Support the success of your team with team analysis and team development!

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Dorsch, Encyclopedia of Psychology. Editor: Wirtz, M. Hogrefe: Bern.

Dweck, C. (2016). What Having a "Growth Mindset" Actually Means. Harvard Business Review.

Dweck, C. (2016). Mindset. The new psychology of success. Penguin Random House: New York.

Anna Albrecht
September 1, 2023