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Self-development is the planned, progressive, and sequential program followed by employees to enhance competencies and sustain job growth and satisfaction. Self-development has three interrelated spheres: (1) professional development; (2) leader-development; and (3) managerial-executive development (Jackson, 2012). Resting on a firm foundation of technical competency, professional self-development consists of individual study through research, reading, practice, self-assessment, and professional association. In addition to the mandated training outlined in the MTP, employees at all levels are encouraged to undertake self-development activities, including formal education and participation in professional/community associations (Florian, 2012). These opportunities will increase knowledge, improve competence in their area of interest, and offset any limitations identified in the career planning process. This is a voluntary effort initiated and conducted by the employee. Active interest in self-development generally indicates that an employee has a strong desire to achieve planned career goals (Johns, 2012). Employees are encouraged to take advantage of self-development opportunities at all levels. Supervisors should consider self-development a factor in selecting individuals for promotion.
Continuous Self Development
Many self-development activities may be credited, with the supervisor's agreement, toward Continuous Learning Points. Professional self-development is achieved by supplementing formal training with membership in professional associations, research, and professional reading (Forsyth, 2004). Although training, seminars, and workshops offered by professional organizations are not always reflected in the individual development process, participation in these activities is valuable to the employee as a source of self-development, and in some cases may be used to meet Continuous Learning Point requirements. Membership in professional associations is encouraged as a means of obtaining current knowledge in one's career field. Trade associations and professional societies publish literature that contains a wide range of technical information not readily accessible to the general public (Malunga, 2012).
The concept of continuous learning for contracting professionals is designed to ensure that, in addition to meeting the minimum statutory requirements for training, education and experience, a mechanism is in place to encourage and promote professional development throughout an entire career (Steiner, 2010). Continuous learning ensures the highest degree of professionalism in the Contracting and Acquisition Career Program; workforce learning must be continuous throughout an individual's career. Professionals should participate in continuous learning activities throughout their careers to maintain currency in their specialties; develop competency in more than one acquisition career field; keep abreast of policies and programs; be exposed to the most advanced management principles and practices in the public and private sectors; pursue advanced technical, business and managerial degrees; and, prepare to assume critical, key technical, managerial and leadership positions (Steiner, 2010). Offering training, education, experience, and leadership. This plan provides a continuum of education, training and experiential opportunities which build upon one another. Once certification requirements at a specific level are achieved, continuous learning activities should become the focus. Attaining certification standards takes precedence, but Individual Development Process must support continuous learning beyond the certification baseline (Christopher and Judyth, 2005).
There is a professional reading list available on the internet. Members are encouraged to review that reading list to identify specific readings the individual might find interesting and professionally rewarding (Jackson, 2012). Attendance at annual meetings and conferences provides an opportunity to exchange ideas and concepts with colleagues employed in private industry and other agencies. There are two services of professional associations that should be utilized by acquisition professionals: professional certification or licensing and continuing education programs (Florian, 2012).
Self-Development is taking personal responsibility for one's own learning and development through a process of assessment, reflection, and taking action. Self-development is a process of continually update skills and to remain marketable in the workplace, and a determinant to a future career direction.
There are some ways to develop this process and they are: Assessing current skills and interest through paper-and-pencil career tests or through computer programs that analyze skills and interests; Maintain a learning log or diary to help you analyze what you are learning from work experiences; Writing a personal vision and mission statement of related to the individual environment and professional work place; Developing a personal development plan that identifies your learning needs and goals; Finding a mentor who can provide you with support, advice, and assistance in your career direction; Becoming involved in professional organizations and reading professional journals and trade magazines to keep current on the latest developments in your field (Johns, 2012).
Individual development will give me the ability to understand the sense what others need in order to develop and improve certain goals to strengthen my understanding and gain a different perspective. This competency is important in the workplace and in my personal life as well because all people should have goals and develop certain things for gaining an understanding on how others feel (William, 2008). I was to gain an understanding on certain techniques in dealing with certain diversity differences and how political beliefs can affect the work place and myself motivation to work with others because of the fear of losing a cultivating opportunity for not being interesting or not have a clear understanding of specific details on how diverse people can be. Learning certain techniques on how to keep specific situations under control when I am not comfortable is an important tool (Malunga, 2012).
Understanding my social skills and be able to encourage motivation in appropriate responses in myself can encourage others to influence themselves and others. I have to use effective strategies and techniques like persuasion and need to work on what my desired results. I have to focus on communication in both myself and to others by staying motivated and focus on key details so I won't get discouraged. As note in our text "the ability to control emotions and impulses. People who self-regulate typically don't allow themselves to become too angry or jealous, and they don't make impulsive, careless decisions. They think before they act. Characteristics of self-regulation are thoughtfulness, comfort with change, integrity, and the ability to say no" (Goleman).
It is as equally important to gain self-motivation, as it is to encourage collaboration and cooperation in both my professional and personal life. I have to focus on working with coworkers and understanding the differences of individuals and focus on the bigger picture, which are my goals to succeed (Scales and Pickering, 2011). Even though my emotional awareness focuses on recognizing one's emotions I have to consider how certain situations that can affect my thoughts so I have to consider how and what that can impact and stop focusing on those around me and focus more on myself. There are so many different tools that are out there like self-assessments that can assist me with finding my own strengths and encourage me to be aware of my limits of self-confidence that can affect my self-motivation so it is important to have an understanding and be aware of my self-worth and learn what type of capabilities I need to get to my goals. For example managing my impulses, behavior and potential for improvement and assist me with learning what to focus on what is needed to have success in my goals both professionally and personally (Malunga, 2012).
Part 2- Critical incidence 1
My Chosen Toolkit : Cultural intelligence
Summary of critical incident - It was a fabulous day with a lot of fresh things coming my way . Lots of activities and lots of participation from people of different backgrounds and cultures . For the first time , i came across so many multi-cultural people and i felt comfortable and touched while interacting with them .This day holds great significance in my life and will help me develop better bond with people of different cultures .However I didn't like it much when my goup was reformed and I had to interact with different people who were now a part of our new group and also when a girl in my group was imposing her ideas on everyone else
. Reflection of the Findings of Chosen Self Analysis Toolkit
It reflects that i have the capability to interact and build good relations with people coming from different cultures .even i felt the same way when my group was formed during the residential weekend .
Identify the Key Strengths and Weaknesses Identified within This Critical Incident.
My strengths during that time were that I enjoyed interacting with multi-cultured people in my group and started sharing more ideas with them .But when my group got scattered , I took little more time adjusting with people of other group .
. Implications for Personal Development
Development means a jouney which involves continuous nurturing , working upon one's skills and the areas of interests to enhance flexibility and efficiency and to reduce the chances of stagnancy . it doesn't actually mean forward movement but means pushing individuals at every level to enhance and realize their complete worth in every sphere of life .(Definition of personal development planning from class material ).
Cultural intelligence :
Cultural Intelligence (CI) is the capacity to make oneself understood and the ability to create a fruitful collaboration in circumstances where cultural differences have a role play .
CI consists of three dimensions that correspond to the classical division between emotion, understanding and action:
The emotional dimension - intercultural engagement
The cognitive dimension - cultural understanding
The Action dimension - intercultural communication
The cultural intelligence self analysis also proves that I take keen interest in understanding the cultural differences and I take initiatives to start a conversation and I want to be heard and make myself understood wherever cultural differences play a pivotal role .
Critical incidence 2
My chosen toolkit -Belbin
Summary of critical incident - it was during the business game , when I was given the responsibility of handling the finance department by the group members ,I was not able to share any ideas nor was I able to add any inputs .infact I was shying away from indulging in all the group discussions .i wasn't able to participate in anything and give my creative ideas when required .
Reflection of the findings of chosen toolkit
It says that i am not comfortable when taking orders from others and that there will be times when i will not be taking the lead , that is the time when i actually need to discipline myself . If i am able to overcome this weakness of mine , then i can become more acceptable in a group or an organisation and will encounter fewer enemies .
Identify the Key Strengths and Weaknesses Identified within This Critical Incident.
My biggest weakness was my reluctance to accept commands of others .There was a time when
I couldnt take the lead . So I understood that I shouldn't feel bad about it and that I must be able to listen to ideas and opinions given by others and start respecting their commands and take them more seriously than ever .In this way , I was able to transform this weakness into my strength .
Implications for personal development
Belbin has studied team work for many years and has named nine team roles which contribute to the success of a team. A team which performs well is comprised of members who all have their own clear responsibilities and that they each must perform their individual duties competently (Scales and Pickering, 2011). 'Belbin suggests that, by understanding your team role within a particular team, you can develop your strengths and manage your weaknesses as a team member, and so improve how you contribute to the team'.
This was not a conclusion drawn after a period of reflection but almost like a light being switched on for me. I suddenly understood the issues surrounding my problems with the Marketing Manager and the other members of the team. I was aware that I was not perceived as a team player, but now the reasons were obvious (Craft, 2010).
My personal Belbin analysis had shown me that I was probably best to avoid the role of team worker and I was a little disheartened by this as team work is a vital part of my role. However to put it in perspective Telford states that 'Belbin's team roles are not to be taken as black or white, true or false. Team role scores are a useful guide in forming a profile of a team'. Telford (2005) p204. So the fact that I did not score highly in the teamwork profile, combined with the scenario outlined above, has given me the confidence to tackle this issue and the situation is now resolved. The development of the my role as a team member will feature in my Personal Development Plan as an area for development.
As highlighted by the Belbin assessment teamwork is not one of my strong points and this is clearly an area of development as it is intrinsic to the success of my working role. Florence Stone highlights the importance of this by commenting that 'when people work together in an atmosphere of trust and accountability toward a common goal, they put aside turf issues and politics and focus on the task to be done' (Steiner, 2010).
Critical Incidence - 3
My chosen toolkit is: Big 5 personality.
2.3.1. Summary of Critical Incident
As I am an international student, when I came here to study, I started part time job as well. The situation was not so easy, as I did not use to manage job and study at a time. In that situation, I did not allow myself to have an impact of work on studies, but my work was being affected. I was not able to do my job properly. I wanted to handle people carefully but I could not.
This situation was very worrying for me. Then I decided to sort out the problem, as I was not satisfied with this level of my work. And when I thought about my behaviour, I decided to change my behaviour towards work as well. I decided to lessen my hours of working, so that I could deal people with kindness. There were different people from different religion and cultures. I studied about all the different personalities to deal them properly. And when I learnt this, all problems got solved, as one of the problems I was facing was due to different behaviour of people.
2.3.2. Reflection of the Findings of Chosen Self Analysis Toolkit
Studies have shown that it is universal dimensions and can be used to describe the personality of individuals from very different cultures. All the customers were from different backgrounds and culture. For evaluating this situation, I used one of the most widely used test to measure the Big Five personality traits, which is the NEO PI, which in addition to measuring the five dimensions, also measured various sub-domains of each (6 sub-dimensions per factor).The scores to evaluate five personality dimensions tend to change with age, so that, over time, people become more friendly, responsible, introverted, more emotionally stable (or less neurotic) and less open to experience. This tool helped me to tell the behaviour what I should adapt and how I should behave.
2.3.3. Identify the Key Strengths and Weaknesses Identified within This Critical Incident
I did not know about dealing with different kinds of people, but I had the interest to know. I was not so rude, which helped me to become more kind.
2.3.4. Implications for Personal Development
Modern psychology believes that there are five major dimensions (also called features or factors) of personality are five pillars that capture the essence of individual differences in personality. These personality dimensions are developed based on both genetic and environmental influences. Studies have shown that it is universal dimensions and can be used to describe the personality of individuals from very different cultures.
Each of these features is a large two dimensional opposite end, for example, extroversion versus introversion. The five dimensions
Neuroticism / Emotional Stability: Neuroticism describes the tendency to experience negative emotions in response to perceived threats and punishment. It includes anxiety, depression, anger or emotional liability. The emotional stability defines the opposite end (Buchanan, and Huczynski, 2010).
Kindness: It includes traits related to altruism, empathy and behaviour as friendly and kind to others. Implies a tendency to cooperate, maintain social harmony and consider others.
Responsibility: It refers to traits related to self-discipline and organization and impulse control and reflects the ability to exercise self-control necessary to follow rules or pursue goals.
Extraversion: It describes traits like sociability, assertiveness, emotional expression, excitability and talkativeness.
Openness to experience: It includes imagination, creativity, intellectual curiosity and appreciation for aesthetic experiences. It relates to the ability and interest to address and process complex stimuli.