Professional development is to discover, design, and deliver truths and principles in order to build wisdom and skills that will help a person become more effective in the workplace. Professional development is most effective when based on a good foundation of personal development.
Professional development areas of focus include the organization, the industry, and the market. The industry can also be thought of as the career field, while the market can also be thought of as the customer segment.
You can keep up to date on many industry trends at IBISWorld’s website, including the fastest growing and declining, most profitable, highest profit margins, highest labor costs, and the most and least risky industries. They also have specific industry reports for different countries.
The PwC not only has many industry specific reports but they also have a page dedicated to the five mega trends facing the world including urbanization, climate change, global economic power shift, demographic and social change, and technological breakthroughs.
Good examples of having different markets within one industry are the legal and medical industries where lawyers and doctors focus on specific markets or customer segments. The real estate industry is another good example, which has two major markets of commercial and residential real estate.
Business in general has two major markets, business to business and business to consumer. However, I submit that some business to consumer markets could sell their products or services to businesses (for their employees).
Think gyms (memberships), personal trainers, life coaching, family counseling, restaurant rewards clubs, or even healthy food truck services during lunch time, for large businesses away from business centers with restaurants. Healthier employees equal less sick leave and increased productivity.
The most important professional development area of focus is the organization. When an organization deliberately develops a good culture it brings out the best in everyone, otherwise it causes people to be disengaged, either passively or actively. This is covered more on the business development page.
Professional development forces include the mind (knowledge and understanding), skills, relationships, and technology. The common assumption is that most new employees (new to the industry or young) are not expected to have much, if any, of these areas of focus. This provides a natural opportunity to set yourself apart from other new employees, by choosing to self-study the organization, industry, and market.
You could increase your knowledge and understanding of your industry or market by reading some books, reading blogs, listening to podcasts, watching videos, or set a free Google Alert specific keywords for your industry or market and they will email you links to online articles each week.
You could join an association or publication that covers the industry you are in. These often provide helpful updates on what is going on in the industry. You could also attend a trade show or annual industry event where they usually provide helpful training and networking.
You could volunteer part-time to gain relevant skills and increase relationships. However, this might not be a good idea in some industries or markets, just be careful you are not going against any policies in your organization, consider getting it approved by your supervisor.
You could explore relationships in the industry or market through social media while also increasing your knowledge and understanding. You could also explore the technologies that could be helpful for your role in the organization, or for the organization itself.
Having a professional development plan helps create self-accountability and implementation intention, which helps with follow-through.
You can download and use the one-page pdf below or create your one-page plan by recording your long-term professional development goal, personality, top strengths, weaknesses, and the top company values.
Then record your primary, or top three responsibilities, and the one most important activity related to them.
Then record the 3-5 people you interact with the most and their personality, appreciation language, strengths, and weaknesses.
Then record your top three work related goals and their lead measures or most important activity to achieve the goal.
Then record your desired learning for the year or quarter and the resources you will use for your learning (books, websites, or podcasts).
Then record the top things you are grateful for in your company or work. Consider reading it daily, every morning to help with affirmations and visualization.
Principles by Ray Dalio, Influence by Robert B. Cialdini, Linchpin and The Dip both by Seth Godin, Mastery by Robert Greene, The Go-Giver by Bob Burg and John David Mann, Decisive by Chip Heath, The Decision Book by Mikael Krogerus, The E Myth Revisited has specific books for real estate agents and investors, dentists, contractors, and specifically HVAC contractors.
Executive Minds, Happen to Your Career, Career Tools, Career Cloud Radio, People Behind the Science, Repurpose Your Career, Invest Talk, Center for Investment Excellence, Mind of a Millionaire, Technology Revolution, Trailblazers, Unprofessional Engineering, The Engineering Career Coach, The Civil Engineering Podcast, Healthcare Executive, Restaurant Unstoppable, Eaters Digest, A Deeper Dive, Running Restaurants, Gym Secrets, Bigger Pockets Real Estate, Real Estate Uncensored, Best Real Estate Investing Advice Ever, Aviation Week, Airline Pilot Guy, MotorWeek, Under the Hood, Automotive News Daily Drive, Lodging Leaders, Suite Spot, Hospitality Design, Insurance Law, The Communicators (IT & Telecom), The Construction Leading Edge, The Art of Construction, Advanced Manufacturing Now, The Manufacturing Show, The Logistics of Logistics, and Leaders in Supply Chain and Logistics.
TED talks, iBiology Career and Professional Development, Association for Talent Development, Learning Technologies, eLearner Engaged, and Leadership with Mike.
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