Career Search Series: Prioritizing Personal Development

When students embark on their career search, they’re typically comparing opportunities on a few commonly-used metrics: intellectual challenge, reputation, salary, and location.

While these help form the foundation of an engaging career, we find there are equally important qualities that students often overlook. This series examines some of those characteristics. Below are some questions we would have loved to ask employers when we were going through the recruiting process – so we encourage you to explore these with potential employers and hope you find them helpful during your search.

 

Personal Development

Life-long learning and personal growth are essential for any successful, fulfilling career. Being able to overcome new challenges, broaden your responsibility, and lead others depends on the ability to grow and adapt to your changing surroundings. A potential employer’s support and development of its employees is critical to the success of its individuals, and the success of the business in the long term.

Be careful not to confuse formal training with personal development. While training programs offered by many companies are beneficial and help you gain relevant knowledge and skills, personal development is a career-long endeavor focused on harnessing your strengths and improving your weaknesses.

When engaging potential employers, try asking some of these questions to understand the development structure in the company along with the cultural importance of growth and development.

1.      How will I find and overcome my top development areas? How will my strengths become even stronger?

2.      How do the skills and attributes of successful employees change as they progress through the company?

3.      How does (Company) invest in its people? How will (Company) structure my development?

4.      What is your biggest development area and how are you improving on it?

5.      What are the biggest skills you've learned at your current position that you didn't have before?

 

Stroud’s Perspective

At Stroud, our people are our product, and we believe rapid development is fundamental for thriving careers. We believe growth requires pairing consistent opportunities to expand one’s abilities with a knowledge of one’s strengths and development areas. This can only come from a culture where consistent, open, and fierce feedback is expected of everyone involved.

 

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