Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Personal development

I wasn't sure whether to post this, because I wasn't sure if it was too humblebraggy, but I decided to because I learnt something, and that's part of the point of this blog, to share what I'm learning.

I've been working in HR since 2004, and in 2006 I joined the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, as a student member, then as a Graduate member from 2008. That's enough of a journey through my CV, but since then, the next step has been Chartered membership. To get Chartered membership you need to demonstrate that you are working with an appropriate level of organisational impact, and demonstrating certain behaviours, by filling in a form, updating your CV and getting supporting statements.

Obviously the hard part of this is working at the appropriate level, and demonstrating the behaviours, but this wasn't really the barrier I faced to attaining Chartered membership, as I felt I was working at the right level. It had been something that I had reflected on in my SRDS for the past couple of years, and whilst it hadn't been an official objective, it was something that I felt I should commit to doing, as it would benefit my professional standing and career development.

So why didn't I do it? Time is probably a big factor, as there never seemed to be enough of it. I left my first attempt at that sentence in, because as I was writing it, I realised that it was wrong. It should read, "Time is probably a big factor, as I never made time to work on it". What I perceived initially as me being too busy, is probably on reflection, me not making the effort to put time aside to work on it. For those of you who have been on our time management course, I wasn't making time for an important but not urgent task. (If you aren't familiar with Stephen Covey's time managment matrix, you can find a version of it here).

Therefore the biggest factor in not doing the work was actually about me taking responsibility for my development, and making an effort to achieve the results that I wanted to. Having put in the time over some lunch hours and evenings, I got my submission ready, sent it off to the CIPD, and a few weeks later, I got my Chartered membership confirmed.

What I have learnt from this experience is further confirmation of the importance of personal responsibility in shaping decisions on how we prioritise our development. Nobody was going to do this development activity for me, so the challenge was about matching up the level of priority I placed on actually doing the work to the level of importance I placed on the achievement of it. I am aware this is an easy thing to write down, and it's harder to actually put it in practice, however it is definitely a useful reminder for me.