Yesterday I saw a resume’ where the person listed eight certifications beyond their maters degree. One of the certifications required four levels! This person could not have been over thirty years of age. I am not sure if this is someone I would hire. I would have been more impressed if that time was spent gaining hands on coaching experiences with a variety of athletes and teams. This got me thinking about professional development where and how young professionals learn and grow professionally.
I encourage you to ask the following questions to help guide & direct you: Where do you learn? Who do you learn from? Do you have a plan and direction for your learning? How much of your learning is online? How much is reading of books, peer reviewed journals and professional journals? How much of your learning is experiential and hands on? Who are your mentors? What are you learning? Do you look for different points of view and opinions? Are you following fads and chasing rainbows or is there substance to what you are learning?
Learning and professional development is a constant ongoing process. I try to devote up to 20% of my time to learning and professional development. It is a process of separating the need the need to know from the nice to know with a definite plan and direction. Above all keep seeking new experiences, experiment, prototype, get out and train yourself to learn. If you want to be an expert then follow the advice of pioneer nuclear physicist Niles Bohr: “An expert is a man who has made all the mistakes which can be made, in a narrow field.” So get out there put you butt on the line make some mistakes and learn.