Advice and Examples: What steps have you taken this year to encourage your professional development?
What steps have you taken this year to encourage your professional development?
The interviewer wants evidence that you have taken responsibility for your career path by being accountable for your personal and professional development. The goal of your response is to take the interviewer through the steps you have actively taken this year to contribute to your professional development.
What to Avoid
Avoid giving an excuse-based response like, 'I have been so busy this year, it's been impossible for me to focus on my professional development.' Yes, you have likely been busy; however, the interviewer wants to hear more about your interest in your growth versus how overworked you feel. Instead, be prepared to talk about even one small thing you do to contribute to your success. Your response doesn't have to be grand. For instance, perhaps you recently listened to a podcast on boosting your communication skills, or maybe you have started to seek out a mentor.
There are many straightforward ways to take advantage of professional development. These opportunities include:
- Reading books and articles from thought leaders in your industry
- Taking online courses to gain new skills
- Attending industry conferences to grow your network
- Listening to podcasts and audiobooks related to your professional interests
At the end of your response, be sure to spotlight how your professional development initiatives will contribute to your success in this new role.