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Importance of skills building

The Importance of Building Skills

We often hear the words “professional development, lifelong learning, continuous professional development and upskilling” but what do these words actually mean?

Everything about our working life is changing faster than we could have ever imagined.  For those that have chosen to take the path of a career-driven life, the pandemic is a reminder that our work is rapidly changing, and we must prepare for the challenges and changes that lie ahead.

When was the last time, you put aside time for reflection and evaluating your own growth and development?

It is common knowledge that competition in the workforce is very high and fast-paced, as an employee, you might feel overwhelmed and even feel stagnant with your status and current abilities. This is where engaging in building your skills and getting additional certifications is essential!

How investing in yourself today will set you up for career success tomorrow highlights that now is the time employers should be investing in upskilling and reskilling their teams, the pandemic has had an adverse effect on economies around the globe, unemployment and termination of contracts is at an all-time high and therefore the urgency for employers to have a multiskilled workforce is a wakeup call for many employees who were comfortable in post and missing essential skills.

In the education industry today most professionals are encouraged, if not required, to attend (CPD) training, to allow them the time to build skills and enhance knowledge. These professional development courses are a opportunity to invest in your learning, build confidence and upskill - Grab the opportunity with both hands!

Six approaches to Closing the skills gap reports internationally— there are still too few systematic initiatives for future skills further training, the report analyses 30 current initiatives in Germany dealing with future skills, one of the key points made in reaching the conclusion of the study is enabling future skills training for all employees.  My advice for those seeking to build future ready skills “Is invest time in your own learning”.

Investing in your future?

Time allocated to Investing in yourself is never a wasted investment, employees should always be encouraged to continuously develop. Nevertheless, as a professional you should always allow yourself to grow and engage in developing new skills.

As discussed by Darren Shimkus there are imperative ways why investing in your continuous development, will help you have a better future.

Let’s take a closer look at the few;

1. Develop a growth mindset. It’s good to acknowledge your strength and what you can do, but in order to stay relevant, it is not enough to stay the same without actually growing into your career. Generally, developing a growth mindset allows you to see yourself as someone who has all the potentials to become much more of who you are today. Understanding that failure and risk come hand in hand in the path of development is a must to continually succeed in the future that lies ahead.

2. Reflect on what you’ve done so far and set goals for where you want to be. It might sound simple, but it actually isn’t — but it’s definitely not impossible. You have to keep a definite view of what you enjoy the most, what is it that you are good at, find that part of your job that you believe you excel the most or love to work on and let it guide you to what your future career decisions may be.

3. Prioritise Learning. There are a lot of ways to continuously improve your skills to become more employable in your career path. Enrol yourself in courses or you could also share your knowledge with those who need support (Mentorship)- this way you re-learn what you know,  while essentially retaining and receiving new knowledge.

Career development.

Like all good things, the fruits may be reaped in more ways than one!

There are three simple and obvious benefits on how upskilling can contribute to a person’s career development.

1. Preserve Tenure. As an employee, you do not feel the need to job hop from one company to another. This is especially true when a company constantly provides an initiative or opportunities for their employees to grow better in their line of work.

2. Discover New Talents. By continually learning new things, you will discover new possibilities that you can achieve for yourself.

3. Future Investment. Harnessing your skills and potentials will make you a greater asset to the company. Thus, making you highly relevant and necessary to be in compared to those who chose not to involve themselves in a continuous path of learning.

In conclusion building skills, is not as difficult as you may think!

Create a clear professional development plan and clear goals!  Having a career plan is important as it can help you manage the direction of your career, the job skills and knowledge you may need, how you get them and how you can secure your dream job.

Developing a career plan can make major objectives that seem impossible become much more manageable.  Identify which skills will enable future-readiness and seek opportunities to learn.

“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second-best time is now.” Chinese proverb.

Author: Zen Kahn, Managing Partner, ZEN Professional Development. A mum of 4, and experienced educator/entrepreneur Zen Kahn has worked with multiple disciplines in large and small organisations, both in the UK and Internationally, a unique background of over 15 years’ experience in education, leadership, training, strategic planning and business development,  provides her clients with unique advantages. Zen and her team work with Educational institutes and service-based businesses to provide Internationally accredited online and face to face qualifications including Leadership development, Safeguarding Children & Customer Service for schools. Zen also co -hosts a biweekly webinar Pushing the Boundaries- The female learning network, a platform for women to build skills and enhance their knowledge on key business related topics. She is passionate about providing adults with an opportunity to learn, building learning communities and helping people achieve their dreams. Her positivity and drive to succeed has enabled her to support and inspire leaders around the globe.