Changing the 'P' in CPD

Handwritten card saying 'Who dares to teach must never cease to learn' by John Cotton Dana

For those of us lucky enough to still have work after the ravages of the Covid pandemic, survival may feel most important. Our instincts from our ancient brain, the amygdala, can kick in when there are such obvious threats out there. CPD – continuing professional development – may be the last thing on our minds or just feel like too much of a luxury.

Such feelings are understandable. They are also unhelpful. It is precisely when the going gets tough that we need to take most care of ourselves. And part of doing that is ensuring we are still learning. In fact learning is one of the ‘5 ways to well-being’.

And if we can learn something which adds to our skills set and makes us more employable, so much the better.

Like many people, we faced a Himalayan-sized learning curve in late March 2020 when face-to-face work basically ground to a halt. In addition to needing to adapt quickly to be able to effectively deliver training and coaching online, we faced challenges related to our disabilities. An open mind and a willingness to learn helped. It is at those moments of mild panic when your inner voice is shouting ‘I can’t do this’ that we need new ideas and perspectives the most.

Both Result CIC Directors took a proactive approach to CPD.  Among several activities, Jane took a FutureLearn short course about teaching and training online. This provided essential advice, particularly on re-thinking how you plan training sessions and combine offline and online working to use interactive time most effectively. Hormoz got new ideas from a course entitled ‘The Science of Wellbeing’ run online by Yale. He also attended a seminar on dyslexia and one by EMCC on ‘Zoom with purpose', about online workshops and coaching. Over the summer 2020 we were lucky enough to gain places on Shirzad Chamine’s semi-intensive Positive Intelligence programme for coaches. This let us practise micro-meditations and delve deep into how we can empower ourselves. 

Interested in the concept of formal Action Learning Sets, we commissioned a session with our wonderful associate, Teresa Wilson to boost our knowledge. And more recently, when we learned that another associate, Janice McNamarra, had used the interactive whiteboard, Jamboard effectively when coaching a neuro-diverse client, Janice generously agreed to demonstrate the possibilities of that method with us. There is always more to learn and there is always a new way to approach a problem.

Result CIC believes that learning is always personal. We learn best when we can process the ideas for ourselves the, by interacting with and experiencing what is being discussed. Because of this, we put ourselves and our lived experience of being marginalised at the heart of the training and do our best to ‘ask, don’t tell’.  We would even go as far as to suggest that the ‘P’ in CPD should also mean ‘personal’ because if you learn well, then you gain genuinely new insights and develop personally, not just professionally.

Here is a selection of CPD training Result CIC have run:

  • CPD: resilience through change - for the Institute of Employability Professionals (IEP)
  • Diversity and Inclusion for Social Enterprise UK
  • Promoting an inclusive culture for Connect Housing.
  • Working with colleagues who are disabled for Manchester Health and Care Commissioning and Liverpool John Moores University
  • Trustee induction training for charity, Breakthrough UK
  • Recruiting from the broadest pool for BBC North hiring managers
  • Inclusive communication: working with people who are deaf or hard of hearing – for Co-ops UK

One of the best things you and your organisation could do for yourselves at the moment is to provide a step back from the day-to-day work and get a fresh perspective on what you do. Why not make the P in CPD personal and ask us how we can support you to do that?


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