Three Professional Development Tips For 2021

While the end of 2021 is quickly approaching, it’s not too late to squeeze in some professional development before it’s over. If your career is feeling stagnant, it might be a good time to expand your horizons by learning something new or taking on a new project. Continuously learning is a great way to stay visible at your company or grow your business. Here are three things you can do before the year is out to grow professionally. 

Take a class on LinkedIn Learning

With thousands of courses on a variety of subjects, LinkedIn Learning is a great way to sneak in some professional development before the end of the year. Plenty of the courses take only a few hours to complete. Because you receive a certificate of completion at the end of most courses, you can use this new skill as leverage in your next promotion or raise request.

There’s plenty on LinkedIn Learning for business owners as well. Whether you want to better understand how to market your business or to handle your bookkeeping, strengthening your understanding of an underexplored area of your business is always a good way to spend your time. IAW members at the innovator level or higher have access to LinkedIn Learning. 

Attend a professional event 

Attending a professional event is a great way to grow professionally. To get the most out of a professional event you should decide what your objective is before picking one. Are you trying to learn something new? Grow your influence? Make new connections? Understanding your intent will help you choose the right event so that you get the most out of it. 

Whether the goal is to network or learn something new, there are plenty of professional networking events happening before the year is over. IAW has several national and local events that you can attend from the comfort of your home. Some events require an IAW membership, but some are open to the public. 

Take on a new project

Whether you’re a corporate employee or a business owner, you can use the last three months of the year to take on a new project. If you’re a business owner, take on a client outside your comfort zone or be hands-on in a part of your business you usually outsource or delegate. For example, if you usually outsource your social media content or your billing and invoicing, you can expand your skills and ability by contributing to those tasks. If you’re a corporate employee, consider volunteering for a new project at the office or taking on a freelance project that will stretch your ability and teach you something new. 

It’s easy for your career to settle into a rut, but it’s important not to get complacent or allow your career to stagnate. If your goal is to climb the career ladder, then you won’t want to stay on one rung for too long. The best way to do that is by learning new skills and taking stretch opportunities. It’s important that if the opportunities you want or need aren’t available to you, you create them by growing your network and leaving your comfort zone. Use the remainder of the year to set your intentions for career growth and development.

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