Finding the opportunity for personal development at work can be a challenging but worthwhile pursuit. Companies are typically incentivised to only promote professional growth amongst employees to push them further in their careers and work skills for the benefit of a business, without giving much thought to the personal ambitions and desires of an employee. However, employees want meaningful work that enriches their lives beyond their daily tasks. Most workers would find more satisfaction in their work if they felt their skills were valued, and that they have the chance to further develop their career paths and passions.
Creating any personal development plan means tailoring to one’s own specific needs and interests; there is no universal solution to meeting one’s own personal needs. In other words, one needs to be self-driven and passionate about what they want. One example of this was an employee who also happened to be passionate about photography even though it did not coincide with any of his work duties at a local company. By taking the initiative, he persuaded his employer to allow him to take promotional photos for the company brochure, giving himself the opportunity to develop his hobby while using it as a way to contribute to his working life. Small steps like this can go a long way for some, while others may wish to develop themselves in other ways, such as career training or job rotations allowing them to explore other career paths.
In addition to taking on new responsibilities, others may find that learning and education will help their personal growth. In some case, companies may even encourage employees to take on the opportunity to take on a study at college or university. United Technologies, for example, is a tech firm that offers scholarships to employees, allowing them to take on new challenges to achieve greater knowledge in their desired fields. Gaining new expertise from an academic perspective can help one to grow by expanding their knowledge beyond the workplace. An educated employee could potentially see a promotion or change in their role at work if they are able to apply their new academic experiences to the workplace.
Lastly, changes to one’s attitude can be key to achieving personal development. Simple changes such as working on relations with co-workers, improving communication skills and becoming more proactive around the office by taking on any extra responsibility can help to improve one’s work life as well as develop other skills necessary to become more successful in one’s career; this can include strategic thinking, listening skills and diplomatic or leadership skills. Taking the initiative to grow this way can also attract more attention from higher ups and make an employee stand out from their peers. Essentially, anything to make one’s job more satisfying and challenging is essential to personal development, and one may pursue an attitude change by picturing the ideal person they wish to be around the workplace.
These are only a handful of examples to achieving personal development in the workplace, and they are exactly that, personal. Finding one’s own path towards their own personal development requires ambition and a clear vision to set out the necessary steps to achieve it.