3 keys to getting the most out of professional develop opportunities.

Posted on May 1, 2008. Filed under: Professional Development | Tags: |

Keeping it short and simple today. Here are 3 keys to getting the most out of professional development opportunities:

  1. Seek out professional development opportunities based on your career goals. Set specific career goals for yourself and use these goals to guide the activities you participate in and when selecting my professional development opportunities. When setting your personal goals it may also be important for you to have a discussion with your supervisor. Many organizations already have a set plan for professional development and your supervisor will have a good idea of what you need to develop to be more effective in your position. It is important to reassess your goals, at least yearly. As changes happen in your career and life, make sure your professional development opportunities are aligned with your goals and your professional needs.
  2. Leave with at least one item to take action on. Every professional development experience is different, whether it’s a two day seminar or a two hour training or a webinar. No matter what the professional development opportunity is, make sure you walk away with at least one thing to do, and hold yourself accountable for doing it. This may be difficult for some training, maybe you thought it was going to be a training you would like and it ended up not pertaining to you at all. If this happens, find one thing out of the day that interested you, even if it was something from a conversation with another participant and not from the presenter. If you don’t have any take-away from the training write down one thing you wish the training included and seek an opportunity to learn about that, or just conduct research on it.
  3. Meet at least one person. It’s possible to have a tendency to walk into a training and walk out with never meeting anyone. This is a no-no. To work on this: if you feel uncomfortable talking to others you don’t know, push yourself, because you never know who you will meet. Make it a priority to get to know someone in the room more personally. Get their business card and remember their name. This will get easier and easier over time!
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