Personal Development And Work Planning Education Essay

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Task 1 - Introduction

Personal Development Plan has the following definition: A structured and supported process undertaken by an individual to reflect upon their own learning, performance and/or achievement and to plan for their personal, educational and career development1.

Or tells with other words, Personal Development Planning means that we set up our personal goals, targets that we need to achieve, personal qualities that we need to improve, opportunities to think through and finding the most effective and easy way to achieve them. Personal Development Planning stimulates the employee to focus at his abilities and qualities that he owns, and to take responsibility for his own development.

Basically, when we are making Personal Development Plan, we compose series of contiguous steps that will take us from where we are at the moment, to the highest vision of our self development. There always must be a reason to develop. If there is no reason to improve yourself, or there is no motivation of achieving that goals, then is pointless having a Personal Development Plan.

Personal Development Planning is a flexible plan which connect the employee's growth in professional aspect with the development of the organization where he is working. It is a two way responsibility between the employee and his manager on what they are going to do to grow.

1'Guidelines for HE Progress Files (2001), paragraph 28

For me personally, setting a Personal Development Plan is a device to make my development easier, because we make plan every day, but we never write them down, and that make difficult to follow our development way.


One of the most important aspect of Personal developing is the planning. The writing process usually helps us to make our goals and objectives more clear and structured as we go further. Making a plan of action will help us visualize what we are doing and observe our attainments.

Planning is essential for a variety of reasons:

One of the most important benefit of planning is that you save time, and as we all know, "time is money". One hour correctly planning today, can save you 2 hours of work the next day. 20 minutes of planning per day can improve our productivity enormously. Indulging yourself time to plan will pay off in future.In the industry where I am working, I always need to plan from previous date. Sometimes even few days earlier. For example, to find out whether I will manage to reach the deadlines, first of all I need to plan how many people I need to have working next day, according to the orders that we gonna have. If I plan my time and people properly from previous date, that will save me wasting time of wondering how to finish the orders on time to meet the deadlines. If we have an order for Tesco which need to be done by 10 a. m , I have to plan from previous date what fruit we will use, and to make sure that we will have the fruit on time in the packhouse.

Planning allows you to set priorities and focus on that what is important for your future development.

Planning helps to employees to develop their roles and plan for the future , keep them up to date and ancourages further development

When you are planning, you will make sure that you are staying on track with your goals and you become more task oriented.

Making plans , you define short and long term aims and objectives, and finding out what is needed to achieve these aims and objectives.

Planning will help you to set up and explore your goals and find effective and easy ways to make them reality.


Main duties and responsibilities

I am working at Edward Vinson LTD for one year, mainly as a line leader in a packhouse for strawberries and blueberries. I am working in this industry for 6 years. I have been working in another packhouse for 5 years, last 3 years like a supervisor, but there I did not have the opportunity to develop myself. For that reason I am happy to work at Edward Vinson LTD now, because they are giving me a range of opportunities to develop myself.

I have got several main duties and responsibilities at the moment :

LINE LEADER - like a line leader I am in charge to coordinate a lot of different processes on the line, to make sure that the final product will be done on time. During the whole working day I have to meet several deadlines , and because of that for me planning the working process is a vital part of my duties. As a line leader I have a lot of responsibilities:

Organize labels for the next order ahead of time by communicating with the label printer

I have to check that the line have the correct

-fruit and variety by instructing the intake cold store operative

-punnets and lids by instructing the packaging stores controller

-correct number of trays by collaborating with the dispatch clerk

-correct program for the average weight system

Make sure line QC(quality controller) does the check weighing and do some additional check weights

Check QC establishing traceability ie, which depot the fruit is going

Continually monitor everyone on the line to ensure that each process on the line is at maximum efficiency and that each worker is productive

In conjunction with the production manager, I plan labour for the line for the following day

CHECKING THE QUALITY OF THE FRUIT - like a line leader I am also responsible for checking the fruit quality according to the specification of the relevant supermarket. Working together with the Quality Control Staff, I also have to check the quality of raw material and ensure that the quality of the final product is continually monitored.

TRAINING THE QUALITY CONTROLLER STAFF - because I have long experience I this industry, and I have been working like Quality Controller, I also help training the new QC staff.

PRINTING LABELS - i have been working like label Printer for 3 months, so I can train the new label Printers, and when is necessary to help with printing labels.

IN CHARGE FOR SHELF LIFE RESEARCH - shelf life is the length of time that fruit are given before they are considered unsuitable for sale or consumption. In the industry I am working, shelf life research is a vital part of our working process, because we have to make sure that we are supplying the supermarkets with high quality products. Shelf life samples must be taken for each order. One sample must be kept in the fridge at about 5 degrees (chilled) and another on the shelf in the shelf life room. I have to weight the samples when I take them and record the quality, and to weight the samples again on Display Until date and record the quality. Then I put the results onto a graph and connect up with a line.

Here is a simple example for shelf life graph:

Fig 1 -Shelf Life Graph For Strawberries

HEALTH AND SAFETY - I am also responsible for the health and safety rules on the line. I have to monitor the workers not to do things that can harm others and themselves. Before they they start work, they are all instructed with the health and safety rules.

TRANSLATOR - I am working with a lot of students from different countries, mainly from my own country - Bulgaria. That's why, very often I have to be a translator, which helps me a lot in my job, because it makes the communication much easier. I also can can translate from Russian


Because I am working for a long time in this industry, I am feeling quite confident in what I am doing at the moment, and I believe I can develop myself. For that, I have some goals which I want to achieve:

My short terms goals are:

Quality Control Packhouse Manager - I think that goal is easy achievable for me, because I have been working like quality controller before and even now, like line leader I am still responsible and monitor the quality

Packhouse Manager Assistant

My long terms goals are:

Become a packhouse manager

Become an auditor

Getting into a Marketing company and work like Technique Manager


I have used smart principles to set my smart objectives. Here is an example:

SPECIFIC - it means that it has been explained properly so that anyone can understand it. I will learn to understand the organization of the packhouse so that I can run the packhouse on my own by 31 August 2010. I will have to be doing the following:

Getting the list of orders from my Manager

Telling the forklift driver what fruit to bring to the cold store

Telling the cold store operator what fruit to bring to each line

Telling label printer what labels to print

Telling the line leaders what orders they must pack

Tell the dispatch clerk what trays to bring to each line

Organise a dispatch clerk to load any vehicle which might arrive late

MEASURABLE - means that I will know when I have completed my objective because there is an easy way to show that I have reached my objective.

Over 2 months I will study points from 1 to 7. Then for 2 days each week I will work with packhouse manager assistant and I will start to do this work myself and manager assistant will just check. Then if nothing goes wrong, I will have completed the objective. If all orders are delivered then I have completed the objective. It is easy to show that I have completed the objective

ACHIEVABLE - can I actually do this or it will be too difficult? It will be possible for me to run the packhouse because I have been a line leader and I have been in charge of the packhouse on Saturdays, so it is not something that will be impossible

RELEVANT - is my objective something that will help me in my future career? In that case, running the packhouse this is relevant because I might work in packhouses or in fruit industry for several years, so this will be useful experience

TIME BOUND - I must say the date I want to achieve my objective. In this case I have set a date- 31 Aug, so I can work towards that date.

Most of my personal objectives link to the organizational objectives of my work placement

I have to constantly check the quality of the fruit

My manager wants to teach me a bit more about supervising and managing people

Being a line leader and managing a line is a miniature how to manage a packhouse - I have to make sure that the working process on the line is effective, that produvtivity is high and we can meet all deadlines. That's why being a line leader can help me a lot in developing myself into Packhouse Assistant Manager

As a translator, that helps me to break work down into components. It is much easier for me to communicate with the workers and to make sure that they understand the kind of job they need to do. That definitely will help me if I decide to develop into a Marketing company like Technique Manager, because I will deal with people from other countries and speaking few languages will facilitate my work.

To acknowledge our own weaknesses and strengths can help us to improve ourselves in anything we are doing, no matter it is positive skills and strengths that can help us to achieve our goals, or our weaknesses that need to be improved. By identifying them we can become successful in our professional life, as well as our personal.


I have to raise myself to the next level- Packhouse Manager Assistant , but for that I need more self-confidence. I have a lot of ambitious and ideas, but iam afraid to voice out my ideas and opinions. I want to be able to press hard for my decisions or ideas to be accepted from the others when iam sure it is really good.

I need to learn more about Health and Safety

Risk Assessment Theory

Risk Assessment Practical

Packhouse Health and Safety

Packhouse Health and Safety Audit

I want to improve more my managing skills , which might give me more confidence in my work - such as Strategic Thinking, Creative thinking skills, Decision Making Skills, Problem Solving Skills, Negotiating Skills, Copes with stress, Adjust to changes, Improve the quality of working life, Makes presentations, Coaching.

Learn more about target measuring - this is how to set targets, or in other words how many punnets each packer can pack for 1 hour . In the industry where I am working , this is a vital part of the working process. Setting targets will help us to work out how long it will take to finish an order, and therefore that helps us to plan our time. The target for each fruit might be different, according to the quality and some other circumstances . I have got some basic knowledge of setting targets, but I think I need to improve them which will help me a lot like Packhouse Manager Assistant

I want to improve my MS Excel skills

To overcome my fear of driving car in England, which will be very useful for me for my future development


One of my greatest strengths is my communication skills - adapting to difference of opinions, acknowledging the differences, assessing without being judgemental, being assertive, ability to resolve conflicts, ability to be concise and clear. At my working place , I meet and get involved with new people almost every day, and of course they are all different characters. That's why , good communication skills are very important in a group setting because of all the different personalities that sometimes might be conflicting. I am a good team player and work well with others.

Well organized - I always write down what I need to do, which is more important than the other. That helps me to organize and reach the planned target and meet deadlines that are important. Line to be neat with all of my work.

I have the capability to cope with failures and to learn from my mistakes. If I fail in something, that does not discourage me, just help me not to repeat the mistake again. I realized that making a mistake is a part of the working process and it helps me to improve my skills. For example, one of my duties is to check the labels for each order, which is something very responsible. If I do mistake, I just learn, and do not repeat it again.

Willingness to learn, acquire new knowledge - I have the capability to learn fast new things or tasks, which helps me to get the job done as well as I can.

I like to meet challenges every day in my job and to learn as much as I can in my position; I have the ability to work well under pressure

Punctuality and responsibility - that is very important for me. I make sure that I am never late and most of the time I arrive early for my job or appointments. Being punctual, gives the employers the idea that you are selfless and ready to engage in work

Open - minded, flexible

I have the ability to value and support the others around me

Good sense of humor


Packhouse Quality Manager can help me to learn more about Health and Safety, and improve my Quality controller skills

Packhouse Manager can help me with improving my people managing skills and learn more how to set up targets for different kind of jobs in the packhouse

Packhouse Assistant Manager can help me improving my skills in organizing the production processes - cooperating all the working processes; and I can also improve my knowledge in target measuring

My course tutor and my manager can help me with raising my self-confidence

OTHER POSSIBLE WORK-BASED OPPORTUNITIES - for me personally just being at work is an opportunity, because every day at work I am learning something new which can develop myself into the way I want. For example, just working with people is the best way to learn more how to manage them, how to overcome the difficulties that we meet every day, how to meet the deadlines and so on. Working every day I gain new skills and learn thing which I can learn at university and things that will be very useful for me if I stay and work in this industry - for example what kind of trays we need for each supermarket, what transport company we have to use etc. Anything new that come to the industry - new label machines, ink jet printers, heat - sealing machines is an opportunity for me to learn more and develop myself.

Task 3 - Work Planning and Time Managing

TO DETERMINE MY WORK PRIORITIES - to determine my work priorities, I need a starting point to establish what I am presently accomplishing (the real situation) in relation to what I should be accomplishing.

I will come up with a plan of my weekly tasks - my working day is from 7:30 a. m till 4:30 p. m, 6 days a week. I will assign myself every Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 7 p. m till

9 p. m ;on Saturday - from 3 p. m till 5 p. m because normally on Saturday I work till lunch time

I will try to meet my managers, when is possible, after work to discuss my courses - I can speak with Quality Manager about Health and Safety, and with Packhouse Manager about People Managing Theory

I can work on efficiency on the line during the work with Packhouse Assistant Manager, because that is a part of my work

Twice in a week - Tuesday and Thursday, I can take course for improving my MS Excel skills

The targets that I need to reach for the coming 6 months during the season are as follows:

Pass People Managing course composed of 5 parts

Health and Safety course - 4 part

-Risk Assessment Theory

-Risk Assessment Practical

-Packhouse Health and Safety

Packhouse Health and Safety Audit

Improving my self - confidence by driving a car and managing the packhouse on my own on Saturday

Take course improving my MS Excell skills - 2 levels

Target meausiring theory of setting targets - 3 parts -set targets fpr each person on the line; investigate how the targets changing with the quality of the fruit

To be more clear and easy to me to reach these targets on time, I will present them into a time table :


time by which I have to reach my targets

Targets that I have to reach


By 31 May

People Managing Course -part 1

Health and Safety Risk Assessment Theory

Target Measuring Theory-part 1

Driving a car from Decoy to Hoo

Target Measuring Theory-part 1

By 31 June

People Managing Course-part 2

Driving a car from Decoy to Strood

Pass level 1 on MS Excel Course

By 31 July

People Managing Course-part 3

Health and Safety Risk Assessment Practical

Target Measuring Theory - part 2

By 31 August

Packhouse Health and Safety

Managing the packhouse on my own on Saturday

Driving a car from Decoy to Rochester

By 31 September

People Managing Course-part 4

Pass level 2 on MS Excel Course

Target Measuring Theory - part 3

By 31 October

People Managing Course - part5

Packhouse Health and Safety Audit

Driving a car from Decoy to Faversham

Table 1 -Plan of objectives and when they will be achieved

When I am making a table and plan to reach my targets, is very important to be flexible. I don't know how long it will take me to finish the task. For example, I think I can finish People Managing Course by 31st May, but because I never done this before, my time table have to be flexible. Also sometimes I may have to work overtime, and that can hinder my plans. The plan I establish will need to be flexible and change as my job requirements and aspirations change.

Task 4-Conclusion

In conclusion, I identified my strengths and weaknesses. I have made a plan to improve my weaknesses which I can separate into 2 groups:

first group is to acquire particular skills such as:

People Managing skills

Health and Safety

Target Setting

MS Excel

This I can achieve studying hard and paying more attention on them to make them better as soon as I can.

Second group is to increase my self-confidence. It is about my personality that I have to improve to be more successful in my future work

I made a time table to work on these qualities.

I also talked and discussed with my managers how to fit in my Personal Development Plan with my work.

By doing Personal Development Plan, helps me to understand that is very important everyone to set his own personal plan, because that will help to achieve your potencial as it will help you identify skills gaps and improvement areas.

I have learned that is very important to set my personal goals very clearly and that they need to be realistic. When I am following a plan, I can always see how much I have progressed towards my project goal and how far I am from my destination. Knowing where I am is very important for me to make decisions on where to go or what to do next.

I have also learned how essential is the planning. With careful planning i often can see if at some point I am likely to face a problem. Planning just will help me to be prepared for obstacles. It is much easier to adjust my plan to avoid the problem, rather than to deal with the problem when it comes unexpected.

I realized the importance of time management. It teaches me how to manage my time effectively and make the most of it. Through time management I can "create" the time that I need and not just for it to come. Time management helps me to set my own priorities. By Time Managing I can get more done in less time. Knowing what to work on, when and how much time I have to finish the work makes me more focused.

By learning all this in making my Personal Development Plan I think that will help me a lot in my development in my personal and work life.