"The growth and development of people is the highest calling of leadership"

Harvey S. Firestone

What IS People and Organisational Development?

Like most things in the last few years P&OD have had a few names and guises, you may have also heard it called Learning & Organisational Development but most people would probably recognise it more readily as Training.

A lot of learning now isn’t just technical skills, a huge part of learning is what has been known as “softer” skills, interpersonal skills, how we behave and the impacts of our behaviour on others, leadership and management skills and currently very topical and massively important is Wellbeing, both mental and physical.

The beauty of learning today is that there is less need for one-size fits all. A Personal development plan can be written to better suit the way individuals prefer to learn.

The People part….

Whilst training is essentially what it is, more often than not it is less likely to be limited to the good old classroom training where you went in and were talked at for a day (I like to think that I've not put anyone through that!). 

We now know that the sheep-dip one size fits all training is a waste of time and money. Everyone is different, we learn in different ways, different things engage us, we have different lifestyles all of which can and should be considered when looking at how to deliver learning. With everything constantly changing in life and in business we are always learning, even when we don’t realise we’re doing it, but we are learning in many different ways.

Without a doubt classroom “training” still has a place, but hopefully (and if you come to our training) is more interactive and engaging, perhaps shorter workshops which could also be online. Self-paced interactive training using different technology is a great way to learn for many and as the name suggests can be completed at a time to suit you. Coaching, mentoring, peer to peer training where team members pass on their skills and knowledge or mentoring, are all different ways in which we can learn.

The Organisational bit….

All businesses should have a Business Plan, a Strategy or a Vision; what do they want to achieve in a period of time and how are they going to achieve it.


Clearly communicating this to your employees is really important. This will help you to gain their buy-in and they are more likely to engage and support you. Remember most people like to feel that they add value, they don’t like being a mushroom – left in the dark to get on with it. Unlike mushrooms, they won’t grow when they’re left in the dark and are more likely to become disillusioned and look for another job.

Delivering the strategy on time and on budget is dependant on having a skilled and capable workforce. However, there are few businesses where all their people have all the skills and equally importantly the behaviours and mindset to achieve everything required of them. This is the Skills Gap we hear about in the news and may well get worse once we leave Europe.

When businesses are growing they are  changing and evolving regularly! When this happens, there is a good chance that some of their existing employees  will struggle with the changes - most of us don't really like change!


They may have gaps in their skills and understanding that need to be filled. To help the come to terms with everything that is happening business owners and leaders need to help their people accept it.


Often it is the fear of change, the unknown that is the greatest problem. A phrase I have heard more times than I care to remember is “I’ve always done it this way; don’t know why we need to change!”. If the change is good and right for the business, providing your people with support through change will help them to accept it and deliver it!


Liaise works with businesses and their people at all stages, please contact us for a chat to find out what we can to to help your business and people thrive.

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