The Importance of Personal Development
Personal development refers to those activities that improve a person’s talents, potential, employability, consciousness and ability to realize dreams and create wealth. In short, it’s what you do to improve yourself and your prospects in life.
Generally, our adult lives are shaped by the experiences and circumstances of our families, neighborhoods and schools during our formative years. Later in life however, our motivations to develop ourselves are powered by our desire to fulfill certain needs, as neatly presented in Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. The implication therefore is that personal development is a life time process, because when needs of a certain level are satisfied, higher ones, which also need fulfillment, arise. On a professional level, this manifests as a desire to rise within the ranks – to climb the corporate ladder – or in a business setting to keep taking our business onto the next business milestone. This could be in terms of revenue, bottom line, geographic presence or product offerings. As a force for growth and progress, personal development is an important aspect of life which each one of us should strive for. It has benefits for our lives including:
Gives clarity to personal vision
Personal development enables you to have a personal vision of the future, which gives you a clear idea as to what or where you will be in the next few months or years. Knowing your target and destination in life makes it easy to draw up a plan on how you will achieve your goals.
Sharpens existing skills
Learning and growing are the hallmarks of personal development. It enables you to sharpen your skills by focusing on developing areas of weakness by:
- Seizing learning opportunities through formal courses regardless of whether they will give you qualifications or not.
- Reflecting on your past and learning directly from your experience
- Reading informally and mentoring.
Gives your talents room to shine
Personal development enables you to identify some hidden talent in you. A talent is something which you excel in, and it will become evident that you are good at something when you:
- Do it with relative ease
- Feel comfortable doing it
- Do it without the need for supervision
When you write down important developments in your learning process, it will enable you, to later reflect on your successes and spur you to get interested in learning more skills in the future.
Improves effectiveness in business
In business, personal development improves effectiveness. It empowers staff to produce better results and meet their targets. For excellent results, an employer or a business owner must have an energetic and a productive team. Business revenues are created by the people you employ and without them, little or no business would take place.
Human resource researchers blame lack of personal development plans which target each employee for dismal performance in the work place. They conclude that a personal development plan for each member of staff can increase productivity and motivation up to ten times.
Trainings developed around personal development plans improve the image of your company and pulls in potential new employees who get attracted to the organization because of the training opportunities available.
For personal development plans to succeed, they must be designed to improve the people within the organization so that both the employee and the organization reap mutual benefits by achieving both personal and corporate objectives.
Drives motivation and satisfaction
The availability of personal development plans not only motivates workers, but makes them loyal to the employer. When opportunities for personal development re lacking, people move elsewhere where growth is available. Nowadays, money is not the only draw that keeps people at a job. They want to learn new things, put them into practice and see the end result in improved productivity. Personal development, therefore, empowers employees to take control, but not to get controlled.
Builds client and employee confidence
Personal development plans may also increase employees’ confidence. The confidence factor might seem inconsequential, but it has a major role to play in how your business is perceived. Client‑facing staff must always exude confidence, otherwise the customer will not be confident in your product or service.
The likelihood of a client recommending your business to someone else is higher if they had a positive experience with a confident worker who was enthusiastic and happy to help. The fact that you’re spending money on their personal development is, in itself, a confidence boost for staff and this rubs off on customers.
Reduces staff turnover and improves unity
Personal development plans are one way of minimizing staff turnover. If you expect total commitment from your staff, it is incumbent upon you to demonstrate the same to them by developing both yourself and your employees. When your employees come first, they will handle your clients very well.
A key ingredient in the Happiness Alchemy
Personal development results in more happiness for you. And if you’re an employer, it achieves the same result for your employees. Personal development plans help point out the direction you personally or your whole team, if you have one, are headed. That hoped‑for target and contentment with it bring happiness. And since it’s a law of nature that when you make someone else happy, you also make yourself happy, then you can confidently expect to be happy after seeing the effects on your customers.
Personal development is an important aspect of life with many far‑reaching benefits. Time and resources spent on developing yourself or your employees is never wasted; they always return a rich reward so make this a part of your growth strategy. Corporate Alchemists specializes in helping individuals and organizations develop appropriate, concrete and effective personal development plans. Why don’t you get in touch and let’s see how we can help you?