Great article Andy. I would add that a professional development program should not be limited to the scope of your profession. I’m sure we’ve all heard the saying that ‘leaders are readers’ and that applies here as well. I would suggest that anyone who wants to be in a growth mode should be reading books from outside your profession. Reading books on leadership, success, relationships, attitude, and people skills builds character and relatability and you will not many who are at the top of their game who haven’t spent time working on themselves.
I’ll have to disagree with your statement on goal setting as well. Goals are set to make you stretch and grow. I would recommend setting goals with that in mind and not to sell yourself short by setting a goal that you can meet without stretching yourself a bit. If you set a goal to work on yourself/professional development 10 hours per week and you hit your goal, great. What if you set your goal a bit higher to stretch yourself, say 15 hours per week and you come up a bit short at 12-13 hours? Who benefits most? Also, in terms of goal setting, there are 2 important aspects that need discussed. First, if it is not written down and looked at, it’s not a goal, it’s a wish. Second, goals should have clearly defined rewards set up with them. Working towards any goal required focused effort so reward yourself for putting in that effort. The reward should match the task so you wouldn’t buy a new car for your 10 hours, but set up a goal where you take the kids or sweetheart out for ice cream upon achieving your 10 hours. Sure, it’s just ice cream, but even the little things in life seem better when you have earned them. In a society where something for nothing is mainstream, just little habits like goals/rewards will set you above the cut and the best way to succeed in anything is to not follow the crowd!
Just my $.02
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