One thing we should be scared of becoming in life is dormant, not growing, not retrogressing. You're going to appear enough and have enough until it is too late. And it is the same with having a small business to running a corporation. The need to grow is not only a legitimate but an essential continuous need.
The norm has longed moved from 'Finish schooling and get a job.' It is now 'Keep learning and keep your job.' You can add 'and build your career.' Whichever it is, lifelong relevance and lifelong learning heavily rely on each other.
Professional development, also referred to as Continuing education and professional training, is the continuous process of acquiring new skills for career advancement. This process of skill acquisitions includes taking formal and informal courses, attending seminars and workshops, field training, mentorship and consultations, and professional membership.
One of the foremost aims of professional development is to increase the productivity and versatility of workers. Of course, the impact will be felt in the business. Workers are better equipped to keep up with emerging trends and channel the organisation's focus, hence, putting resources to profitable use.
It should not be equated with on-the-job running. Rather it encompasses on-the-job training. It is not limited to effectiveness on the job, but it broadly entails career advancement. It is a way up and a way out. The question is, where are you heading?
Benefits of Professional Development
Professional development is a two-faced sword holding advantages for both the employer and employees. Accordingly, employers should give room for their staff to engage in professional development. And even go as far as setting up training and sponsor them for training. It promotes staff retention and loyalty. Employing a new staff now and then doesn't come cheap. All skills acquired directly reflects in their input. No one takes a professional course to organise a family union. It is about efficiency and relevance in work. For the individual, the benefits include:
- Skills acquisition
- Improved productivity
- Better retention
- Career development
- Better opportunities
Steps in Professional Development
As already established, there is no narrow way to professional development. Another thing worthy of equal emphasis is that there is no end to it. There is always something new to learn in your field or a relevant discipline. There are enough areas to last a lifetime waiting to be covered. And that is why you must be intentional and specific as you engage in professional development. Otherwise, you'll end up with loads of irrelevant and unrelatable skills. However, the emerging and relevant trends are always captured in the following:
- Seminars and Workshops
- Field training
- Mentoring and Consultation
- Professional certification
- Professional membership
The goal is to keep you up-to-date on current trends, emerging demands. And to develop new skills for advancement in your field/industry. How about you take a look at a few courses today?