Get a better insight into CPD by reading these real life case examples.
“The benefits of having a mentor in an organisation are that they can connect you to teams, people or experience that you need to further your career. They can use their knowledge to help you better plan where you want your career to go and how to achieve that. They become a re-assuring hand on the tiller of your professional direction and an invaluable aide in developing your knowledge base and progression.”
Matt, Senior Principal Engineer
“For me, having a mentor has helped shape the way I view my career by discussing and testing ideas with those that have far more experience. The mentor isn’t there to provide the ‘answer’ but to question and interrogate the individual’s thoughts and choices and offer alternatives ideas. By presenting and discussing options in this way, the individual, as I did and still do, can form a better selection from the choices ahead of them. The competencies required and the experience that is gained through achieving professional accreditation together provides a solid foundation that career advice can be based upon.”
Tom, Senior Principal Engineer
Management Development Scheme
“So what value can you take from being on a management development programme? You will definitely have the opportunity to learn tools and techniques to enhance your skills in areas like giving effective feedback and exploring your own strengths and development areas. You will have the chance to practice your skills in a safe and hopefully fun environment before you test them out for real! You’ll work with managers who have similar challenges and skill levels to you –giving you great chances to share experiences, learn from others and build a good support network. It’s motivating to know you are helping others to succeed, developing yourself at the same time and ultimately playing a big part in ensuring the organisation is successful.”
Lucy, Learning & Development Advisor
Career Development Plans
“Having a development plan can be a broad or very detailed process, but what’s important is setting objectives about where you want to be to enable you to move towards them.
My development plan is the latter – less detailed and very fluid, but focused on professionalising communications within defence and elevating the position of comms as something that adds value and contributes toward overall company objectives and success.
“So far, this has involved achieving a professional qualification in PR in order to put recognised theory into practice and benchmark my skills with others. This was a big challenge, particularly juggling master-level studies with full time work.
Since then I have pushed my comfort zone by moving into a secondment to experience different areas and I’m building my skills.having a plan in the broadest sense is the best way to move you towards your goals and help identify the best way to reach them. Next up, getting chartered!”
Caroline, Communications Officer
New Starter Buddy
“On joining my company, new graduates or undergraduates are given a ‘buddy’, which provides them with a friendly contact at the start of their development programme. They are usually someone within their department already on the graduate scheme, or having just completed it. In the first couple of weeks, I really benefited from having a buddy, as I could ask them basic questions about the company or general day-to-day things that I wouldn’t feel comfortable asking more senior members of the department. It was also useful to hear about their experience of the graduate programme, as they explained to me how the programme worked and gave me advice on how to get the most out of my first few years in industry.”
“It was great to have someone to introduce me to members of the department and other graduates, so that I could start to build up a network of contacts and friends within the company.”
Sarah, Graduate Analyst
Internal Support Groups
“The benefits of having internal support group within an organisation are they can provide the additional routes to achieve a common goal and maximise the opportunities for the organisation as whole to succeed. They can offer a unique overview of the organisation which enables the sharing of knowledge, best practice and expertise to strengthen all groups within the organisation.
“Working as part of an internal support group is rewarding and the scope of roles and responsibilities available are varied. From a personal point of view it is good to know that the job you do is helping the organisation to achieve its objectives. “
Sophie, Business Support
Personal Development Plans
“Plans allow you to work towards goals for yourself. Be that an accreditation, a new role or a skill you want to have. However, plans don’t work in isolation! Seeking feedback as often as possible to play to your strengths and highlight anything your colleagues would suggest could be developed further helps you test and tweak your progress. Some training courses or work often provides feedback automatically but if not it would benefit you to ask for some, no matter how small or who it’s from, as it’s often revealing about how you’re perceived. I tailored my plans against an accreditation framework and sought out specific activities; roles or projects that would help me achieve an accreditation. My mentors and managers helped me find these opportunities to develop, so I would recommend asking them for suggestions. It’s likely they’ve been in a similar situation as you at some point in their career!”
Luke, Research & Development Engineer