CCPD is a no brainer. We learn something each day. However, the delivery of traditional CPD is problematic. I know that I am playing devil’s advocate here but hear me out. At many events I’ve attended, I’ve witnessed people collecting their certificate stating they have invested x number of hours in their personal development. 

Why do they need a certificate? If there is to be any measure, shouldn’t it be a measurable development in skill-set or behaviour? Because unless these things are developed, the number of hours spent accumulating CPD points is immaterial. Hence, Conceptual Continuing Personal Development (CCPD) where employees could:

1.   Consider and then apply the lessons learnt from an inspired conversation, a TED Talk, public debate or a good book.

2.   Reflect on a news item that has motivated a change of behaviour or understanding and apply it to workplace practice.

3.   Relate learning from a secondment, volunteering or sabbatical via a talk, or instigate a change of policy or procedure in the workplace.

4.  Identify the learning gained from online course(s), not what the course presents as its learning outcomes.

5.   Notice the positive impact of how someone behaves or acts, then emulate in your own working practice.

6.   Rest and recharge.

Each one would be written up as and when it happens. It would not be all the points above, just one or two. The write-up would not have to be War and Peace. All that is required is: one sentence on the learning itself and two on its application. Submission is online to HR and prefilled onto performance related review forms.

Organisations that provide CCPD days should trust that the hours allocated will be used wisely. CCPD could take three routes: traditional, contemporary or combine both.

Tradition would opt for conferences, courses and secondments.

Contemporary allows employees to opt out from official training to select one of the six areas raised above. 

The combination would be a little of both.

Life enables us to grow and develop at our own pace. Those of us who want to attend courses, read and research appreciate each opportunity to do so and will flourish because of it. Traditional CPD takes time away from daily tasks, but to what extent does it change behaviour? If employees are gaining a new or specific skill then fine, but if it is just to satisfy some box ticking exercise then it is a waste of time, money and resources. 

So let’s allocate each employee a minimum of 3 days CCPD per annum in which they can pursue areas that will inform working practice. That way everyone reaps the benefits. If you are thinking, ‘well, everyone will just take the extra 3-day holiday’, is that so bad? If they need the rest, they will be more productive when they return to work.

CCPD could help save money, time, resources and stress. It recognises autonomous learning and provides something to think about.

#learning #practice #change # think

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