When young people enter and progress through the working world, it’s important for them to have the support and resources to find and pursue professional development opportunities. According to Forbes, “being a professional means constantly seeking out opportunities to grow in the industry and advance your career.” Professional development means finding opportunities for growth when it comes to skills and knowledge in the working world. These opportunities can refer to continuous education or training programs within or outside the organization an employee works in. Here are some examples of useful professional development opportunities for employees in all fields.
Networking events are great opportunities for people to connect with professionals in different fields as well as their own. The professionals they end up connecting with can act as potential leads for job opportunities. In general, networking can expand your social circle and give you a confidence booster. According to Forbes, “networking makes you noticeable.” Standing out in your field of expertise can help open doors for new opportunities. You want to stand out from the rest of the crowd as much as possible. Achieving a degree in a particular subject is one thing. However, being able to utilize it is another. This is crucial when it comes to looking for a job. Your goal is to make a good first impression so that potential employers will stay in touch with you and keep you in mind should they choose to hire you in the future.
Continued or Post-Graduate Education
Many workplaces require their employees to have at least an undergraduate degree to enhance their qualifications for their job. Having post-graduate education qualifications can help you sound more confident when you present your resume to your potential employer. This includes apprenticeship programs, an associate’s or bachelor’s degree in a specific field, or other formal education or training credentials that showcase your learning and skills. According to Investopedia, “more education leads to better job stability and pay.” Obtaining a higher education credential can give you a better chance of getting the job you desire. It also shows that you are willing to learn new skills and continue building your capabilities.
Taking Time to Reflect and Prioritize Your Growth
When it comes to deciding where you want to go on your employee journey, workplaces may not give much time or space for reflection on where you’re currently at in your employee journey and where you want to go. If your employer doesn’t give time for this reflection and building your skills, advocate for it, or do what you can outside of work hours that would help you grow personally and also aid your professional skills. Many employees approach gap years or transitions between jobs as a great opportunity for dedicating time towards building skills and educational or professional qualifications to boost their resumes. And when it comes to big work changes such as being laid off or furloughed, that may be a good time to reconsider the employment opportunities available and where would be a good next step for personal and professional growth. Not every storm cloud has a silver lining but making the most of the time available will help employees continue building on their current skills to work towards their future goals.
Interns can be seen as the grunts of the working world. But the grunt work gets them to learn the value of time and efficiency in the workplace. An internship gives a new employee their first exposure to the company and usually to the working world at large. Gaining work experience is key for boosting their employability in the future, so starting with an internship opportunity can be a great stepping stone for future growth. It gives them the foundation of a basic skill set that they can continue to build on as they grow professionally. The drawback with using internships for professional growth is that many are not paid very well, if at all, so this professional growth can also be paired with a financial burden. So potential interns should make sure to do their due diligence in researching the company and what their internship involves. Internships also help build a network and expand your social circle to professionals who may be in positions that interns are striving for. They also allow you to explore different jobs and decide whether you want to pursue them further.
Performance Reviews and Feedback
Performance reviews give you the opportunity to see where you stand and identify areas for improvement. There is always room for professional growth at work. No one wants to be stuck in the same rut for years on end. Change is good. Growth opportunities and support and feedback from managing staff allow employees to advance in their careers. Depending on the organization, these reviews occur annually, semi-annually, or quarterly. Performance reviews are not only opportunities for employees, but also for employers to discover and learn their employees’ strengths, weaknesses, and longer-term goals.
Online Certification Courses
Learning never stops. Online certification courses give employees a chance to enhance their resume so that the chances of procuring their dream job is reasonably high. It’s never too late to upskill your skills. According to Indeed, “examples could include interpersonal skills like verbal communication, public speaking, active listening, teamwork or leadership, or technical skills like project management and software proficiency.” They get to study at their own pace and procure more opportunities in the job market.
Developing a Positive Mindset Through Learning
Professional development is all about overcoming adversity and that comes with a positive mindset. Having a positive mindset boosts self-confidence and improves how people view you as a person. When it comes to networking events and job interviews, you want to create a good first impression for employers and recruiters to remember. Positivity will help you get a wonderful job, and it will help you develop your leadership skills. You want people to take you seriously and at the same time feel happy to be working with you. This all comes with having a positive mindset and attitude.
Gauging Professional Development with Employee Experience
There is always room for development for employees. PxidaEX is a great tool to get you started to understand the needs of your employees to help them succeed. Sign up for a free trial today!