Seeking professional development opportunities at work is a great way to move forward in your career. They can result in more credentials on your resume that can yield a promotion, a raise, and/or more responsibility. It’s also a great way to challenge yourself, keep your mind engaged, and to persist with advancements in your industry.
When an employer provides learning and growth opportunities, it shows how invested the company is in its staff members and what motivates them to excel beyond their current skill set.
Unfortunately, not all companies think this way. In this case, employees tend to feel stagnant and underappreciated. If this is the situation you’re in, here are some ways to overcome it:
▪️Approach your boss
From a company standpoint, it’s imperative that employers understand the significance of employees’ needs and values and create an open-door policy where opportunities can be made available to them. Whether this is happening at your company or not, never be afraid to show initiative and tell your boss that you want to enhance your credentials and solidify yourself in your career.
▪️Think outside the office
As mentioned above, there are many programs online that provide continuing education and professional development opportunities outside of work, and a lot of them are free.
Mentioning to your boss that you’re pursuing more credentials can motivate them to possibly integrate these programs into the business depending on which skill set you want to expand.
▪️Massive Open Online Courses
Massive Open Online Courses, or MOOCs, are offered by prestigious universities and educational firms including Stanford Online, Coursera, Udacity, and University of California, Berkeley. You can also pursue an advanced degree online, but be prepared to pay tuition fees, as master’s degree programs can be quite pricey.
▪️Search for professional development associations
You should consider becoming a member of a professional association and find out what the requirements are for joining. This can help you expand your career network with more professional development opportunities for a reasonable cost.