What is Business Professional Development?

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  • Written By: Hillary Flynn
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 22 December 2019
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Business workers employ business professional development to enhance knowledge and skills that lead to personal growth and expand career opportunities. This may entail continuing education classes, in-house training, mentoring sessions with a senior employee, or periodic self-assessment exercises to redefine goals that will improve performance. Participating in a business professional development plan is essential for any ambitious employee who wishes to advance in a company, and most successful businesses encourage and sometimes fund education opportunities to ensure their employees are as proficient and effective as possible.

Business professional development begins with a plan that is either created solely by the individual or with input from a manager. This is often tied to performance reviews. The best way to begin a plan is to assess both strengths and weaknesses and apply them to future goals. For example, if a junior employee desires a future in management and has no current supervisory experience, that employee may add attending a leadership training seminar to the development plan. Listing an employee's current tasks along with the tasks of a position the employee sees as a feasible promotion is a great way to identify key areas that will enhance the employee's current performance as well as develop skills that will enable the employee to advance within the company.


The type of education included in a business professional development plan is dependent upon the industry in which one works. Many professionals have careers that require a license. In order to renew a license, workers are often obligated to complete a prescribed number of continuing education hours that satisfy the specific criteria demanded by a licensing agency. Professions requiring a license in the United States include law, medicine, accounting, engineering, and architecture. Maintaining a license in these careers ensures the professional is competent and continuing education keeps knowledge current.

Classes and training that fulfill the requirements of a business professional development plan can be found in many places. Larger companies often provide training through in-house education programs. When training isn't available on site, employees may find continuing education classes at colleges, professional agencies, computer training centers, or even online. Some companies have training budgets that allow each employee to spend a specified amount on training and education courses each year. Others will have to pay for their own classes, but with a little bit of hunting on the Internet, it is possible to take advantage of a number of free training opportunities.



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