Human Resources

Employees Want to Take the Wheel—But Managers Still Have to Navigate

When it comes to career development, employees want to be able to steer—but they also know that they can’t do it all by themselves. Employers must still provide training, and managers should know how to provide advice and guide employees’ advancement.

Announced in a press release, Right Management—a division of ManpowerGroup—has released its new report, Talk the Talk: How Ongoing Career Conversations Drive Business Success.

This new report highlights how today’s employees are willing to trade job security and traditional corporate pathways for the chance to chart out their own career on their own terms. However, employees still place great expectations on employers for training and career advice.

Research carried out by Right Management shows that skilled individuals, particularly those with in-demand skills, are dictating how, where, and when they want to work. As they take greater control, they are more likely to move within their current companies or on to other companies for growth and advancement opportunities, causing employers headaches when it comes to recruitment and employee engagement.

In response, Right Management has reimagined a framework for “Career Conversations” to provide employers with practical advice and help organizations engage employees while meeting business goals. It enables employees to feel empowered about the direction of their own career and achieve personal goals while still driving the business forward. The process has six stages:

  1. Who am I? An assessment to look at what the individuals want to achieve and where they currently fit in an organization
  2. What is expected of me? Planning a development path, ensuring goals are SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound)
  3. What and how should I develop? Looking at specific areas for individual development
  4. How am I doing? Providing ongoing assessment and engagement with the employee’s manager
  5. How will my talents and contributions be recognized? Development of a motivation and reward program specifically suited to personal motivations
  6. What’s next? Looking at the next steps in an individual’s career and how to work toward it


Mara Swan, executive vice president, Global Strategy and Talent, ManpowerGroup, said, “Our new research finds that two-thirds of individual performance drivers can be tied to effective Career Conversations. If these conversations took place more regularly, 82% of employees would be more engaged, 78% would share ideas more freely, and 75% would be more likely to stay with their current employer. That’s a business opportunity that simply cannot be ignored.”

For more information on the Talk the Talk: How Ongoing Career Conversations Drive Business Success report, visit