Invest in yourself – don’t wait for your boss to do it!

The Letter - Judith Holmes Drewry

The Letter - Judith Holmes Drewry

Once the domain of the CEO or senior manager, I am seeing people at all levels in small, medium and large organisations coming to me for coaching and paying for it themselves.  Why?  Because they recognise that to survive at work they need to invest in themselves!  So what’s going on?

Today’s workplace is fluid.  One day you are a highly valued employee, the next you are fighting to keep your job.  Change is everywhere and we need to continue to refresh our skills and bring new approaches to the work we do – we need to add value, generate new business, innovate and keep the organisation we work for profitable and valued. 

There was a time when an employee may have expected to receive training, professional development and opportunities for growth from their employer, but in today’s competitive workplace there isn’t always the time or the money to support these ambitions.  There are a number of reasons for this:

  • A small business may be fighting to survive – investing in their employees at present may be a step too far
  • Uncertainty about the future may be making some businesses reluctant to invest in their people
  • A small business may feel that investment in skills development simply isn’t a priority
  • A large organisation facing reduced profits or funding shortages may not be able to justify investing in developing their people

So it may be time to take the matter into your own hands.  And taking time to step outside the workplace to consider your current position, your own development needs and how they may be met could be a smart move.  Here are a few examples of where coaching and mentoring can help with your own development:

  • There has been a change of direction in the leadership of your organisation, which leaves you wondering how you can make an impact and add value
  • You are trying to survive in a shrinking organisation where colleagues have less time available to support each other
  • You are looking for a role in a different industry or with a different employer and need some help in preparing for this
  • You are in a new role and you feel that support from someone outside your organisation would benefit you and improve your performance
  • You are facing redundancy and need help to work out your next steps so that you can achieve financial stability in the short term and plan for the longer term
  • You have work related problems and don’t know how to manage them
  • It may be time to look at your own wellbeing and what you want from life

Having your own coach means you have access to someone who will help you to recognise and build on your own skills and also identify those skills which need developing.  A good coach will listen, ask questions, challenge you and give you time to reflect, draw you own conclusions, set your own goals and help you to achieve them.  Making decisions and facing challenges can be hard and sometimes lonely.  And sometimes dissatisfaction in a role may be because the cultural fit of the place where you work is no longer right - their values and aspirations may not be the same as yours. 

Spending time talking through your options with someone who has no connection with your home or work life can be hugely beneficial and give you time to think and plan how to make those important next steps.

If you’d like more information about how coaching can enable you to take control of your own personal development, then get in touch and let’s talk about how we can help.

Izzy Ixer, Director and Principal Consultant, Blue Pebble Coaching