The COVID-19 pandemic has turned upside down the daily routine of every people, invading all the spheres of human activity. In particular, it has left the most noticeable and indelible imprint on business and employment, making companies introduce radical changes in their workflow and operation. In this regard, in his article “Career development in a virtual world,” Sarah Nagem discusses the importance of supporting career development in the pandemic contexts, offering specific recommendations. This paper aims at providing the analysis and summary of the article, its main arguments, my personal view, and open-ended questions.
Nagem raises the theme of employees’ career development, emphasizing its increased necessity in the emerged conditions of the pandemic and related events. According to the article, the several recent waves of lockdowns and other social restrictions implemented by governments have rived workers from their usual workflow and pushed career growth into the background (Nagem, 2021). To show this adverse phenomenon, the author provides the latest surveys conducted by reliable journals and opinions of business leaders. Moreover, the article proposes straightforward tips to stimulate career development in these circumstances, which are related to a development plan, communication, gap identification, technologies, and others.
The article presents different views on the existing situation, yet most of which support the idea of addressing the issue of career growth. Specifically, the author argues that maintaining a definite career development program makes employees feel valued, which typically results in significantly better workers’ retention. This argument is underpinned by the Global Talent Trends 2020 report and Joe Tarasco, the CEO of Accountants Advisory Group. Besides, Nagem states that most companies fail to develop appropriate career programs, indicating that only six percent of respondents have elaborated development plans, according to Reimagining Finance for the New Normal’s report (Nagem, 2021).
The author also recommends some simple but helpful tips on how to enhance workers’ career development. First, companies should build a two-year career development plan comprising leaders, HR professionals, and staff members. Second, managers should pay close attention to communication with employees becoming detached from their habitual workflow. Third, along with Amy West, a vice president of AHRC NYC, Nagem argues that detecting gaps in personnel’s knowledge is a real need (Nagem, 2021). Forth, the article offers to use mentors and advanced technologies to help workers upgrade or acquire skills and communicate better. Finally, in the pandemic, the management should prioritize the needs of career growth, focusing primarily on the most critical activities and long-term goals.
My Personal View
I agree with Nagem Sarah regarding the importance of maintaining professional development, especially in the challenging conditions caused by the pandemic. Despite the chance to work remotely, most employees feel lonely and even abandoned because of a weak connection with their managers and colleagues, causing poor motivation, frustration, and a desire to leave. In this regard, one of the best ways to improve workers’ wellbeing is to broaden opportunities for their career growth. Staff feels that the management appreciates and cares for them despite the complicated situation and will compensate this attention with increased performance. I only should note that in addition to the author’s tips, I would recommend that companies provide virtual learning, training, and discussion resources to promote communication and development.
- How do you see the issue of career development in the short- and long-term prospects, that is, after the end of the COVID-19 pandemic? Will the pandemic come to nothing or make an indelible imprint on employment?
- What will the main trends and transformations occur in the work environment and the overall business after the pandemic?
- Should we make most operational processes remote using technologies, or should in-office work still remain an indispensable part of employees’ routine? Is there a compromise or balance?
- Do managers have other alternatives, besides career development, of how to enhance employees’ motivation and devotion to their companies?
Nagem, S. (2021). Career development in a virtual world. Journal of Accountancy. Web.