Professional Development: Workshops

I spent a good chunk of the day in a workshop for the job. It was a nice, intimate group and the discussion was intense (in a good way) due to the nature of the subject (racial justice). One of my favorite thing about professional development opportunities, whether required or optional, is that it gives you a chance to interact with other coworkers.

Like many of you, I see only a fraction of my coworkers. Some I only know through email threads, overheard conversations, etc. But the chance to put a name to the face is always fun. I find it interesting how we approach trainings differently, depending on the obligation.

For example, at my previous office, we were required to complete a designated amount of professional hours before the fiscal year ended. In addition to attending and documenting the training on an online system, we also had a series of brief essays to write. Some saw it as homework (which really never goes away), but I liked that extra analysis.

Since I knew I had a requirement to meet, I also was highly selective of my choices. Yes, it meant I was off-site for the day(s). Always nice to break up the monotony. But I wanted that time to count. Figuring out 1) what trainings tied back to my position and 2) also enhanced interests my job description didn’t include was a challenge I embraced.

Now that I still do professional trainings, but without a requirement/restriction–I take more time to research what’s out there. It’s less about my current skills and more about touching on those areas of growth. The bucket list items I pushed off for one reason or another.

No matter what you feel about professional development within the workplace, I’m hoping that you jump on the opportunities as they arrive.

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