Developing your personal and professional skills are fundamental to surviving and thriving at work. You might disagree with me here, but the way I see it, if you don’t continue to raise your “standard” it’s logical to assume you’ll remain where you are.
When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves – Viktor E Frankl
The fact is that personal development stretches our capabilities. It expands our outlook to see things that were previously outside our view. It gives us confidence in ourselves and our abilities. It removes the ceiling on what we previously assumed was our limits, so we can view exactly what we’re able to achieve.
Knowing others is intelligence; knowing yourself is true wisdom. Mastering others is strength; mastering yourself is true power – Lao Tzu
Awesome FREE Development Resources
To assist you with your personal and professional development, I’ve pulled together a list of FREE online resources that I regularly use to upskill and educate myself.
All are 100% free (some have an upgrade option for a certificated course, if desired) and 100% online:
- Alison – Thousands of free online courses, ranging from personal development to soft skills, to managerial topics.
- Future Learn – Free online courses from major universities, covering numerous topics. Has a robust Management & Business category.
- Open Learn – Free courses from the UK’s Open University.
- Coursera – Free courses from numerous universities & organisations, with a sizeable Management & Business category.
- Open2Study – Free courses from Australian Universities. Includes topics such as Negotiation and Strategic Management.
- edX – Offers free courses from such universities as MITx, HarvardX, BerkeleyX and UTx. Although the site specialises in science, electronics & engineering topics, it also covers topics such as Becoming a Successful Leader and Quality Management.
What to Develop?
If you’re wondering where to start with your personal development, I recommend you read my previous post on CVs – specifically the part about using your CV to navigate your career.
The same principle extends to your personal development – identify the gaps between your current skills/experience and the skills/experience you need to achieve your desired role.
These gaps should form part of your personal & professional development goals.
A bonus tip:
If you haven’t got a desired role, focus on your manager’s role and gap fill for that. Always aim for at least “one higher”. That way, not only do you stretch yourself, but you equip yourself to be unbelievably awesome in the job you’re currently in. Bonus!
As I love you guys, I’m also including a copy of my very own Personal Development Plan template:
This is the template I use to support and monitor my own personal development. I hope you find it helpful!