Personal and Professional Development

Pearson BTEC HNC/D Diploma Business - Unit 13 : Personal and Professional Development

Unit Description

This is solution of HND Personal and Professional Development Assignment, given in Regent College, guides to develop personally and professionally.
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Assignment 1

Managing our learning and working on developing ourselves personally and professionally by developing or improving our skills and competencies to deal with the challenges in the market is called self-managed learning. We need to fist do a SWOT Analysis on ourselves to find out our strengths and weaknesses and also to find out the threats and opportunities in the market. Then we need to set short term and long term goals and objectives and timelines to achieve these goals. Continuous monitoring and evaluation is required and we need to make changes in our development plan depending upon the feedback. Self-managed learning involves choosing the skills we want to learn, way to achieve these skills and competencies and the time and place to learn these skills. I believe that SWOT is the best way to start with the development plan. This is the method which I have identified for my learning and development. I will find out my weaknesses and then I will plan for these weaknesses. Training and coaching are some of the other suitable methods to develop and identify our needs.

Propose ways in which lifelong learning in personal and professional contexts could be encouraged

Personal and professional development plan cannot be just short term and long term in this case is life-long. We develop ourselves and learn new things for our entire life. It starts from childhood and ends at the end of our life. We learn from the people around us. Increasing competition and innovation in the market encourages us to develop ourselves continuously. Life-long learning keeps us updated with the new technologies coming in the organizations. If we learn something today it stays till the end of our life with us and it also gives us opportunity to teach something to people around us. Learning is the one thing which increases after sharing with others (Ballou, 1999). The voluntary and ongoing act to learn something new for the entire life is called lifelong learning. Self-motivation is very important for the lifelong learning. We cannot develop ourselves under someone’s pressure. We need to know the benefits and disadvantages of the acts we are performing for developing ourselves. Benefits will be obviously more and they will make us sustainable in the market for longer run and our future will be secured. Hence own benefits will motivate us and we will be able to spend time on our personal and professional development. If we have some skills and competencies we will be confidant enough and we will be able to capture all the opportunities available in the market. Demand for our skills and competencies will increase in the market and we will get the best job. Below are the some of the ways which encourage an individual for lifelong learning in personal and professional life.

Being confidant is one of the best ways to stay motivated to learn new things. Failures are part and parcel of our life but we don’t need to be depressed but after finding the weaknesses we need to work on them. We have to be confidant in the way we learn or perform our tasks.
Using some techniques like SWOT and SMART will also help in encouraging for lifelong learning. We will learn from our failures and we will use our strengths to capture the opportunities available in the market and we need to develop short term and long term plans for our development.
Self-Motivation- Everyone has to be self-motivated to stays updated to the new things available in the market. We need to have knowledge and skills about all the fields like politics, society, culture, economy, other countries etc. Without self-motivation we won’t be able to keep ourselves developed personally as well as professionally (Zimmerman, 1992).
Hard work is one of the other ways to develop and motivate ourselves for personal and professional development. We need to plan our short term and long term goals and work continuously hard to get our goals. Hard work alone is not sufficient we need to work in a smart way also.
Evaluate the benefits of self-managed learning to the individual and organization

It is beneficial for both employee and the employer. Below are some of the positive impacts of self-managed learning on the individual and also on the organization he works for:

It makes us more confidant and independent personally and professionally. It helps on getting better opportunities like jobs etc. in the market. We will have more skills and competencies to show in our resume. It helps in finding out the strengths and weaknesses and work according to that.
Interpersonal skills like communication etc. will be improved with the help of self-managed learning. We will be able to communicate and relate better and with confidence with people around us. We will be able to make stronger and long term relationships with the colleagues and other individuals who work with us (Cunningham, 1999)
We need to attend some seminars and conferences and it will l help us in improving our presentation and communication skills. In today’s professional life presentation and managing communications skills are very important to survive.
We will be better team players and it will also help in being a better leader. We learn to be committed ad dedicated towards the work. We learn to lead from the front and it makes your team members also very much confidant. It improves the productivity of all the employees which is very beneficial for the organization.
It the organization is encouraging the employees for self-managed learning or for personal and professional development it will be very beneficial for the organization also for all the employees. Organization has to provide trainings and other resources for their development. It will help in gaining the confidence of the employees and hence the employee will stay for longer period of time with the organization. Attrition rate will decrease and organization will see a direct impact on the profit as cost will decrease because of low attrition rate.
Self-managed learning makes us ready for future challenges and we will be able to handle all the difficult situations in the life independently.
Assignment 2

Evaluate own current skills and competencies against professional standards and organizational objectives

Below are some of the skills and competencies which I have developed in my entire life from the people around me and also from the education.

I have learned various management subjects like marketing, finance and human resource management. It will help me in my career growth in professional life.
I have always been good in numbers and have very good analytical skills. It helps me in analysing options available. It has helped me in improving my decision making skills.
I have good leadership qualities like motivator, determined and focused. I played as a captain in my college’s football team and it has helped me in developing my team played and leadership qualities.
I am good in making stronger relationships with the people around me and I have good interpersonal skills.
Identify own development needs and the activities required to meet them

Every individual needs some areas where he has to improve and develop himself. These areas can be found out by knowing your weaknesses. Some of my weaknesses and the ways to get rid of these weaknesses are as follows:

I am not god in public speaking. I will join any personality development institute for first two months and then I will join a club where I can improve my public speaking skills.
I am not good in handling more than two tasks at a time. I need to work on my time management skills. This can be improved by taking advice from my seniors. I will start my day with dividing time to all the tasks to be dome in the day and allocate some time to each task.
I also need to attend some stress management sessions to work without any mental pressure or stress.
Identify development opportunities to meet current and future defined needs

We have already discussed my strengths i.e. my skills and competencies and also my weaknesses and now its turn to discuss on the opportunities available. A management student has huge demand in the market. I am good in marketing and human resource management. So there is huge opportunity of joining reputed organizations in public and private sector. There will be a great opportunity to implement my theoretical knowledge in the practical world. Working under experienced leaders teaches us so many things. I will be able to learn time management, leadership and team player skills. Organizations where we work also provide opportunities to develop the employees and make them ready for future challenges. I will try to acquire as much skills and possible to get fit into any field and to be useful for the organization.

Devise a personal and professional development plan based on identifies needs.

Planning is very important to work on our weaknesses and to develop ourselves personally and professionally. I will firstly join course on communication and personality development where I can learn the basic of public speaking. I will do this course for two months. I will also learn software packages like customer relationship management i.e. CRM (Buttle, 2004). It will give me an advantage in the market. I will start working on my time management skills. Every day in the morning I will note down all the tasks to be dome and then arrange them on the basis of priority. I will then allocate proper time to each and will try to finish the tasks in time. It will improve my time management skills and will also help me in working without stress. Attending yoga sessions is another way to reduce stress.

Discuss the process and activities required to implement the development plan.

Below are steps to develop and implement the development plan:

First step is to do the SWOT analysis to find out the weaknesses. On the basis of these weaknesses and opportunities we will prepare the development plan.
We will prepare the strategy and in our strategy all the outcomes should be clearly mentioned.
Third step is to decide the action plan. For e.g. we will decide on the way i.e. training of self-learning that we will choose to learn new thing.
Next step is to decide on the detailed plan which includes setting short term and long term goals. For e.g. we will decide between classroom or online trainings and time duration of these trainings.
Last step is to evaluate the plan and make changes on the basis of our development (Guskey, 2000).
Undertake and document development activities as planned

In this part I will discuss what I have already done to improve my weaknesses and how I am working for my development personally and professionally. As I mentioned that I want to acquire technological skills like software packages so during my studies I took Information Technology as a subject. I have basis knowledge of these software packages and after my studies I will join some professional course on try to get hand on knowledge on these packages like SCM, CRM. I have also started reading books written by famous writers in the management field. I as reading books on time and stress management. I have also joined the yoga committee in my locality where I live. It also helps in increasing my social life.

Reflect critically on own learning against original aims and objectives set in the development plan

I have mentioned above that I am working on my weaknesses i.e. public speaking, stress management and multitasking skills. But I believe that I am too behind of my aims and objectives. I want to be perfect in my communication and presentation skills. But I have just learned the theoretical concepts and I need to work much harder and develop a fine plan to achieve these goals and objectives. If I talk about time management skills the technique of writing down all the tasks has really helped a lot and I am satisfied with my performance in handling more than two tasks at a time. But my professional life will also help me in being perfect in managing time properly.

Update the development plan based on the feedback and evaluation

I have evaluated my development plan and took feedback from my friends and seniors. I am still lacking in my communication skills. So I need to change my development plan and give more time in improving my skills. I will spend some extra time in reading management books which will help me in having strong command on the knowledge. I need to add some more skills to develop in my development plan. Writing skills are very important in an organization because most of the communication happens through email or written reports. Hence I am adding writing skills to my portfolio. I will also try to specialize in one field i.e. marketing, finance, HR, or information technology instead of trying my hand in all the fields.

Read more about HND business Organizations Behaviour

Select solution to work base problem

In this part I will select a problem which is faced by most of the organizations and provide a solution for that. The problem I have selected is discrimination on the basis of caste, religion, sex, race etc. It leads to very negative environment in the organization and people don’t feel safe. It also leads to conflicts and fights among the employees. Solution for this problem is that there needs to be strict laws and regulations against any kind of discrimination. Employees should be given freedom to raise their voice against any kind of unfair behaviour. All the government rules and regulations against discrimination should be clearly communicated to all the employees. Manager should try to create friendly and healthy environment in the team so that everyone looks each other equally.

The above picture shows an example of racial discrimination.

Communicate in a variety of styles and appropriate manner at various levels

There are three types of communication styles for different job levels in an organization.

Upward communication: Communication from lower level employees to higher level employees is called upward communication. The ways used for this communication are emails, phone calls, chatting etc.
Downward communication: Communication from higher level employee i.e. senior executives to low level employees is called downward communication. Town hall meetings, notice boards, emails etc. are some of the ways for downward communication (Simpson, 1959).
Horizontal communication. Communication between the employees of same level is called horizontal communication. Employees communicate face to face, in meetings, through chats etc. It helps in creating healthy and friendly environment in the organization.
Evaluate and use effective time management strategies

As I have already mentioned the importance of time management strategies and it is also one of my weaknesses. I have worked on it. Below are the three major strategies which can be used for time management skills and for being comfortable in multi-tasking:

The first technique is to note down all the tasks and arrange them on the basis of priority and then allocate proper time to each task and then work according to that (Waterworth, 2003).
Other way is to divide all our tasks into sub-tasks. It will help us in knowing the exact time which is needed to complete the entire task.
Other way is to stay away from the tasks which are just time waste. For e.g. we need to reduce the time we spend for social networking sites like Facebook, twitter etc.
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Self-managed learning is one of the most important parts of personal and professional development. We need to have proper development plan to develop our skills and competencies. The first and most important part is do SWOT analysis to know the weaknesses and opportunities available in the market. We need to continuously evaluate our development plan and improve it. Our development plan should focus on our needs. In my case I need to work on time management and multi-tasking. We discussed the three strategies for time management and I believe the first technique is the best suited technique.
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