Executive Coaching Articles

Professional Development Programs

Forward thinking professionals often stop and examine their progress. Are they meeting the goals they’ve set for themselves? Sometimes the answer is a proud, “Yes!”

In other cases, time has slipped by. And when you look, you’re not where you want to be. You have not developed professionally. Maybe you’re spinning your wheels. Perhaps you lack some key training. The motivation and desire are still burning. But somehow, progress has not kept up.

Many professionals turn to development programs to give them that essential added boost. These career advancement options can keep you on track. They can nurture you and help you grow to the place you want to be.

Check out these four choices to find the program that will get you your perfect results.

  1. Executive Coaching. The beauty of executive coaching is that it’s one-on-one. The training is tailored just for you. You have a coach who will listen to where you are right now. Then he or she will design a series of coaching sessions.

Each session sets you up to progress. You get instant feedback on your current actions. You have a person separate from the company, so your concerns, worries, or frustrations about the company or the people you work with are strictly confidential. You can be open and get targeted strategies to move you forward.

  1. Mentoring. The advantage of mentoring is that you have someone who knows the company and the company culture. They can give you details only an insider would know. They may guide you through the political maze.

The disadvantages:

  • Most mentors are not skilled teachers. Thus you are left to learn by observation.
  • You may have difficulty finding a mentor. They may want to focus on the rising stars, not the dedicated worker on a lower rung.
  • Everything you say and do is “on the record.” It will all reflect back to you. So you will need to be careful as you discuss problems or frustrations with your current situation.
  1. Custom Training. If your company has invested in custom training, check to see if you may attend. This kind of training may equip you with skills necessary for your professional advancement. Product knowledge, safety, compliance, systems, or leadership training may all be presented through custom training.

The advantages are that the training comes to your company. It will be tailored to the specific needs of the company. You can be sure the results will give you skills necessary to move forward.

The drawback is that it will not be geared specifically to you. And it will tend to focus on whatever the company feels is needed. It may not address your specific concerns.

  1. Professional Education Courses. These are ideal when you have a specific goal that only further education can accomplish. If the job requires an MBA, this is where you will go. It will give you the diploma or certification you require.

Take a moment to examine what your next step should be in your professional development. Do you need hard skills? Do you need help navigating the company culture? Will a degree or certificate program advance your skills? Do you need the one-on-one coaching that will refine your professional abilities and help you reach your career goals?

Once you know which program will work for you, you can move forward to reach your goals and achieve your professional objectives.