November 29, 2019

A Guide To Creating Personal Development Objectives At Work

Setting personal development objectives can be a challenging task, but don't fret. We've got a few tips to help you out.

Personal development is any course, habit, activity or other venture aimed at improving awareness, wellbeing, health, identity skills or talent. People strive for personal development for a number of different reasons, the one factor which links everyone together is the fact that personal development objectives have to be something which creates better things for you, individually.

Personal development from the perspective of an individual and from the organization can only be viewed as a good thing. For the individual, personal development increases an individual’s mindset to self-awareness. In the period of personal development, individuals recognize their values, beliefs and purpose. Personal development also gives individuals a clear sense of direction; allowing for easier decision making and goal setting. Other key benefits include enhanced focus, increased motivation and greater resilience.

Importance of Performance Development Objectives

So, it’s clear that personal development plans are important for employees as individuals, but why is it important for organizations to encourage their employees to look for personal and proffesional development? Well… research indicates that encouraging personal development has a number of positive correlates. Arguably the most direct and clear positive influence for you as the organization, is that personal development improves job performance – employees will attend trainings, seminars and more learning development opportunities. Further, development is more likely to increase motivation and retention for an individual. Organizations should invest in an employee’s personal development as it improves the opportunity for internal promotion, and finally, employees who invest in their personal development and have a growth mindset are more likely to go above and beyond what is expected of the normal employee.

Personal Development Types


1. Skills

Personal skills are soft skills, otherwise known as interpersonal skills that are essential for management skills. They are not easy to teach. Examples include problem solving, emotional intelligence, adaptability, critical thinking and active listening or even body language to name a few.

2. Growth

Personal growth is an ongoing process of development and understanding oneself. The overall aim is to achieve one’s full potential.

3. Power

Personal power can be described as mental toughness towards different situation.

4. Improvement

Actions to continuously improve behavioural and performance aspects of one’s normal life.

5. Empowerment

Personal empowerment is the sense with which you are in control of one’s life, in turn enabling you to take action and help control your decision making.

6. Analysis

Personal analysis is an ongoing process of reflection and introspection, with the thought of acting on processes you do not like and maintaining and improving on ones you do.

7. Objectives

Personal development goals for work are specific objectives that an individual wants to achieve. They can be altered and are continuously evolving dependent on the level of success.

Deloitte found this important snippet of information in their annual survey, "leading organizations are shifting toward a model that empowers individuals to acquire valuable experiences, explore new roles, and continually reinvent themselves. However, 59 percent of our survey respondents rate their organizations as not effective or only somewhat effective at empowering people to manage their own careers."

So, let’s help you out! Here are some of our top tips to creating personal development opportunities at work.

Tips for creating personal development opportunities


1. What and why are you trying to develop?

The first stage in anyone’s personal development journey is to think about what it is you are aiming to develop, and the reasoning as to why you want to develop this skill. Identifying why you want to change will answer a plethora of questions: Do you want to address your weaknesses or improve upon your strengths? How do you start out? How's improving your knowledge in this specific are going to help you?

2. The Planning Stage

Planning your development will help make your development more realistic. Making a plan with defined objectives, set time limits which will force you into starting and continuing with your development plan. Planning development milestones and defined limits will help you succeed.

3. Document Development

Keep track of your progress, document when you move forward, when you meet a brick wall and when you meet a crossroads. It’s important to write down why this happens and how you move forward. Documenting your development enables you to review your progress and a record to look back on. It can be easy to forget details when you look back on your progress, documenting said details enables you to reflect upon said details.

4. Focus

You don’t have to get everything you want to develop all at once. Having a continuous focused mindset will help you to remain proactive in chasing your goals and remained set on the superordinate task.

5. New Opportunities

Do not be afraid to take new opportunities. This rings true in all facets of life, but also importantly in personal development. You may be asked to try new things and it is not worth simply turning things down because you have not come across it before. Sometimes you need to get out of your comfort zone!

6. Evaluate

As with any process-based activity, it is important to evaluate the successes and failures to make it better for the next time. Spending time on self-reflection will benefit you in a long term. In a way it’s a lot like the evaluation stage in SMARTER goals. Evaluating your development will make for a more successful journey next time as you embark upon personal development story.

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