As summer starts to fade and fall starts to peek from around the corner, I get very excited, as I start my return back to working with teams and presenting at conferences. Thus, it made me want to write a short blog about the importance of gifting ourselves learning and development opportunities.
And why not gift ourselves as leaders?
Think about this. People turn to leaders when they have a problem or they just need to be pointed in the right direction. People rely on leaders to have the answers, but more importantly, to guide them toward finding answers themselves. People rely on leaders for personal challenges and professional challenges. People rely on leaders for SO MANY REASONS.
Taking on a leadership role is not for the faint of heart. But if you’re reading this, you already know how rewarding it is! And what makes it even better is that leadership methods can be taught and the opportunities for enhancing your skills are endless.
So whether you’re just starting out in a new leadership role or you’ve held this responsibility for decades, it’s always the right time to upgrade your leadership power with continued learning and development.
Why Leaders Need Continued Learning and Development
Since others look to leaders for guidance and to help them find solutions, it only makes sense that leaders need to stay on top of their game.
Technology, society, and the workplace progress rapidly, and leaders can’t sit back and rely on old advice. They need to take an active approach and stay up-to-date on best practices and workplace research so that when they are called upon, they’re ready to answer and take action.
With a bit of planning and an inquisitive mind, you can stay tapped into your full leadership potential at all times!
You Have to Slow Down and Invest Time in Yourself
Most leaders love learning ways to improve themselves, create happier workplaces, and share their knowledge with their team. But even the most dedicated leaders sometimes get so busy that investing time, money, or resources in themselves seems selfish, frivolous, or unnecessary.
There’s a major flaw in this way of thinking, though, because the longer you put off your continuing education and development, the further you’ll fall behind and the more time you’ll need to spend putting out fires that could have been avoided.
Instead of becoming flustered and suffering from waning confidence, active participation in your development enables you to respond more quickly, assuredly, and accurately.
How to Stay on Top of Your Learning and Development
It’s best to look ahead when it comes to staying knowledgeable in your field and making sure you’re on top of the best leadership advice.
A few tips to think about are committing to measurable goals and setting aside time in your calendar in advance for researching programs, trainings, and more.
Write down how much you want to learn in your career goals and get specific. How many trainings, workshops, books, or podcasts will you complete each quarter? Write down a reasonable goal, then block time in your calendar every quarter to plan time to research or talk to your peers about what’s coming up and where you want to invest your time.
The best part about tapping into this leadership power? You’ll inspire others to do the same and you’ll have plenty of recommendations to help them level up, too!
Looking forward to seeing old friends and meeting new ones at the following association conferences: