10 Things We Need to Grow at Work


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Heads up employers — I hope you are listening.

We posed a simple question on our LinkedIn channel to test the waters: In your opinion, what is the single element that employers need to provide to help careers flourish?

Hundreds of you replied — 664 and counting — thank you.

Here are the 10 most mentioned elements:

  1. Trust. You’ve likely guessed this element. It’s the trump card of organizational culture. If trust isn’t present — honest career conversations simply cannot happen. Without trust where are we?
  2. Clear expectations. Simple and straight forward works best — and the communication channels need to be wide open.
  3. Motivation and empowerment. We all want be inspired and receive the needed support to put it all into action. Add an appropriate level of challenge into the mix and we’ve got a great cocktail.
  4. Training. We need to develop strategically — and there should be nothing random about this element. Even better? Explore delivery options that help us apply what we’ve learned straight away.
  5. Mentoring. Whether informal or formal — knowledge sharing is vital for career growth. Ensure that both mentor and mentee are fully on-board and encourage goal setting.
  6. Autonomy. Ah, the neglected flip side of responsibility. These elements should always arrive together. If we can’t really spread our wings — we’ll never gain the experiences that allow us to expand our skill set.
  7. Respect. At every step. End of story.
  8. Recognition. Being an unsung hero isn’t all its cracked up to be. “Thank you” is a great start — however strive to make recognition meaningful. We all have a different perspective concerning this topic.
  9. Feedback. Working in a vacuum just doesn’t cut it. We all need both encouragement and direction. Remember that we possess varying capabilities to process feedback, so keep this in mind.
  10. Creativity and innovation. Ideas and innovation should matter. We know these elements can “make or break” and organization, so assess your organization’s capability to encourage idea sharing. (One option: The Alliance Diagnostic).

Stay tuned to learn more about career alignment in today’s organizations.

Meanwhile — please tell us your organization’s story. Take the Sprout career alignment survey here.

If your organization would like an executive summary of the results, click here.

Dr. Marla Gottschalk is an Industrial/Organizational Psychologist.  She is the Director of Organizational Development at Allied Talent. She is a charter member of the LinkedIn Influencer Program. Her posts on workplace topics have appeared in Forbes, The Huffington Post, US News & World Report and The World Economic Forum.

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Toni Randall says:

    Amazingly, I find this helpful and true, even though I work alone at my house, often in my pj’s. I still rely on others as I can only do what needs to be done by networking. Thanks!


  2. Tanndo walkace says:



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