Learning and Development – A Two-Way Street

There are clearly a great many benefits to employers in offering learning and development opportunities
to their staff. Not only does this allow staff to become fully effective in their roles all the quicker,
but of course ongoing development provides companies with a pool of internal candidates who are
ready and able to take up higher-level positions.

Learning and development, however, isn’t a one-way street. Employees have an equal responsibility
to themselves and their employers to ensure that they maximize their learning opportunities. Here are
a few ideas on how to do just that:

1) Don’t treat company orientations as just things to be endured. These give you your first real introduction to the business and can tell you much about the company culture as well as provide you with essential practical and legal advice. Pay attention at those sessions, and be sure to read any materials provided as handouts.

2) If you’re not sure about something, ask. You will look far more stupid if you make assumptions
and get it wrong than you ever will by asking.

3) If you’re promised certain training when you start a job, follow up with your manager to ensure that
it happens.

4) Actively participate in training and development activities instead of using them as an excuse to take
a break from your normal role.

5) Don’t let your learning stop at a training session. Do your own research to expand on your knowledge.