Personal development of employees
By Julie Winkle Giulioni | Posted November 26th, 2013 | Learning
We often hear the term "self-development"... like there’s any other kind!
Organizations can architect learning cultures. Talent professionals can construct career journeys and learning paths. Training and development departments can offer catalogues full of courses.
Organizations invest considerable resources to create external environments in which learning can happen. They implement strategies to become "learning organizations." They install systems that provide easy-access to countless developmental resources. And they train their managers to leverage learning like they do other investments.
But missing from these plans is the fundamental understanding that what's happening on the outside matters much less than what’s happening on the inside.
The inner game of learning
Before anyone can take advantage of the learning resources available in the world around them, they first have to engage in an inner dialogue that readies them for learning. They have to grapple with and mentally utter three sentiments:
"I wonder..." Learning begins with a sense of curiosity and quiet questions to one’s self about how things might be different in the presence of new knowledge or skills.
"I want to..." Motivation and a growing desire for a change provides a powerful impetus. Sensing a gap between today and a better, more effective and interesting tomorrow inspires action.
"I will..." Learning can be risky business. It requires the acknowledgement that current performance might be improved. It requires taking steps in new and unknown directions. And this requires optimism and confidence that learning is possible and achievable.
The inner game of learning is owned, controlled, and driven by the learner.
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Enabling employee self-development
Supporting powerful employee self-development comes down to facilitating three essential activities:1. Internalizing intentions
The most effective learning is based in a conscious, deliberate decision to change.
Frequently this takes the form of learning goals. But goals tend to be externally oriented — the what, how, and why that serve as a framework for organizing action — but do little to propel one toward genuine learning.
Learners need to set their own internal goals or intentions that inspire them with a sense of meaning, invigorate their minds and souls, and inform action.
These intentions aren’t perfunctory; they’re personal. They build the human rather than business case for development. They also enhance the meaning of the work and the instructive process.2. Observing progress