If you’re reading this article, it’s likely that you have signed up as a subscriber to the ImproveMe Development Portal. Congratulations – we’re super excited to have you on board!
The purpose of the portal is two-fold – firstly, it’s designed to help you identify potential careers of interest (matched to your two key competencies identified through the ImproveMe Competency Assessment) and provide guidance on the wide variety of ways you can seek to explore these careers further.
Secondly, it’s filled with content to help you develop and grow your key competencies (strengths) further. Not to mention providing motivational content to help you maintain your enthusiasm for improving yourself and planning for your future.
One of the common questions we get asked by portal users is “Where should I start?”. Here’s our list of five activities you should undertake on the Development Portal to get the ball rolling on your personal development journey:
1. Explore your career lists
Visit the Careers tab to review each list carefully and use the Further information links to learn more about what each role entails, including job descriptions and links to relevant industry associations. Use the Notes column to jot down any thoughts you would like to remember. When considering occupations of interest to you, consider how your second competency might be useful in that role. Once you have explored a role, mark the role according to your level of interest – whether that be Interested or Not for me. You’ll receive a point per job for undertaking this action, and any careers you are interested in will automatically be listed on your portal Dashboard.
2. Watch a TED Talk
Originating from a Technology, Entertainment and Design conference in 1984, TED Talks today cover topics from science and business to personal growth and social change. Leading thinkers in their field of expertise are given a maximum of 18 minutes to present their ideas in the most innovative and engaging way they can, resulting in some very powerful speeches.
Under the TED Talks tab, you’ll find a range of talks that relate to your two key competencies. You will also find a selection of content to assist with your understanding of motivation, success and more. Why not start by listening to two short TED Talks – Success is a continuous journey: by Richard St. John and Try something new for 30 days: by Matt Cutts – to give you a flavour of how they work. Then work through the lists provided and watch other talks as you have time available. Keep your eye out for new content that will be added on a regular basis too.
3. Listen to a podcast
Listening to podcasts is a brilliant way to pass the time on your commute, relax at bedtime, or even distract yourself while at the gym. Importantly, they are an awesome way to broaden your horizons and learn from people from all walks of life. All you need is your smart phone (and maybe a pair of earphones).
Under the Podcasts tab, you’ll find a selection of podcasts relating to your competencies, as well as others that the ImproveMe team think you might enjoy. There’s also some instructions on how to get started if you’ve never listened to a podcast before.
If you’re an athlete, we strongly recommend you get started by listening to The Wide Open Road Podcast (Ep2): How athletes can effectively transition to life after sport with David Parkin. Another interesting one for all users is Becoming SuperHuman: How to shortcut your career success and lean directly from industry transformers.
4. Learn about influencers
When we say “influencers” we don’t mean people who are famous just for being famous. We mean people who are (or were) truly revolutionary and unique, who achieve amazing things as a result. Whether it’s someone old-school like Steve Jobs, or someone currently experiencing the height of fame like Ariana Grande, our Influencers tab provides a list of people who use the same competencies you possess to their very fullest advantage. Follow the links provided to learn more about each person, and search and follow them on social media for ongoing information.
5. Take action
Under the Take Action tab you’ll find hints about way to expand your knowledge and explore potential industries and careers of interest. Read these tips to collect small points, and then earn more significant points by actually following the suggestions (whether this be setting up a chat with someone over coffee, or arranging to shadow someone at their job for a day, for example).
Be sure to mark the tick box for each piece of content you watch or listen to on the portal, and use the Notes functionality to record any observations that you learnt from the content.
On the Dashboard tab, you can track how many activity points you need to reach your next milestone (rank). Your Recent Activity and Careers of Interest will automatically show up on the dashboard, as will Notes you make about any of the content.
If you need help at any point, please reach out to the ImproveMe team via firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll be happy to assist. Remember, just one small action is all it takes to kick of your personal development journey. Good luck!