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Here’s the bottom line: If you’re not growing professionally, neither is your organization.

The good news is that if you prioritize growth, you’re not alone. Research shows 76% of employees want career-building opportunities for countless reasons. We detail them below.

1. Build Your Confidence

Confidence is crucial in the workplace, and professional development enhances it by improving skills and fostering better collaboration. Career training solidifies self-confidence, leading to improved performance and outcomes at work.

Employees worldwide believe confidence is a crucial soft skill. In fact, an Indeed survey finds 95% of workers say confidence is important when aiming for a new position. The same poll finds 90% of workers believe confidence significantly determines whether a job is a good fit for them. Professional development closes the skill gap and helps you get ahead of the competition.

2. Develop Your Skills

Acquiring new skills related to your industry is essential. For example, if you’re a marketer, attending a conference like the Marketing AI Institute’s MAICON conference can teach you how artificial intelligence can automate your marketing processes.

When seeking career development opportunities, focus on your niche and the abilities you need to become a valuable and versatile employee. In today’s job market, upskilling is key. In fact, a Manpowergroup report highlights that 77% of employers struggle to find the necessary talent. Gaining new, fresh skills can set you apart and help you drive positive change for your association.

Related: Top 10 Generative AI Tips Associations Can Use to Create Content and Drive Efficiencies Learn More >

3. Elevate Your Value Proposition

Not everyone has access to skill improvement opportunities, as some organizations lack resources or haven't established career development programs. An American Psychological Association survey indicates that 47% of employees lack educational opportunities at their workplace.

This doesn't mean you can't find opportunities to elevate your value proposition. Find ways to leverage professional development opportunities within or outside your organization, such as formal training, job shadowing, cross-training, certificates, and workshops. Some examples of insightful, free educational opportunities include the Google Analytics 4 certification or Sidecar’s regular webinars.

4. Hone Leadership Abilities

Professional development is crucial in the workplace, as it cultivates leadership skills necessary for effective business management. Even innate leaders benefit from training and practical experience before assuming leadership roles.

Through professional development, individuals can refine their leadership abilities and gain insights into the smooth functioning of an organization. This often involves management training, such as leadership classes, supervisor shadowing, and networking at industry conferences.

Related: Top 5 Educational Events for Association Leaders Learn More >

5. Drive Career Growth

Professional development enhances your knowledge, increasing the odds of getting promoted or nabbing lucrative positions. Demonstrating the acquired skills through career development not only makes you more valuable to your current organization but also positions you as a competitive candidate in the job market. In fact, a 2021 Gallup study finds upskilling leads to an 8.6% salary increase on average for American workers against those who did not upskill.

6. Enhance Your Productivity

Professional development is key to preventing workplace complacency and enhancing productivity. To rejuvenate and boost creativity, professional development opportunities like training courses can help you learn new skills and gain a fresh perspective.

If learning energizes you, you’re not alone. Research shows employee development leads to a 24% increase in productivity. Upskilling and reskilling have proved essential in preparing for future jobs, improving your status in your current role, and driving positive change in your organization. Professional development serves as motivation to improve and find more efficient ways of working.

Level Up with Our On-Demand AI Learning Hub

If professional development is important to you, then don’t forget to register for our on-demand AI Learning Hub. Designed for the busy association professional, it offers continuously updated content and a community of peers to keep your AI knowledge fresh, relevant, and applicable. Through this bootcamp, you’ll learn the basics of AI, how to use prompting AI models, key use cases for your association, and more. Click the button below to register.

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Post by Beth Rush
December 6, 2023