Why a blog about personal development or learning and development when there are so many of them already? That’s a question that has occured to me a number of times when I have thought about creating a site about my passion for Learning and Development.
However, as I have been talking to various people over recent weeks it became clear that this was something I both wanted to do and needed to do. It’s many years now since my career focus moved into the learning and development arena and throughout those years I have discovered an immense amount about both myself and others.
I started my career in Banking, back in the days when it was an honourable profession! During those early years I discovered Junior Chamber International (JCI) which is a management development organisation. The thing that fascinated me about them was it gave members the opportunity to learn by
- getting involved in practical projects such as organising the Manchester Lord Mayor’s Parade;
- to learn about leadership and management through taking on leadership roles within the organisation such as I did by becoming Local President, undertaking National Project Manager roles, Regional Group Chairman and National Director
All of which was complimented by formal training inputs to put practical learning into a theoretical context. I also had the opportunity to train as a Trainer with JCI and was to go on to deliver training on a local, regional, national and international level and to work with some amazing people such as John Adair.
It was through JCI that I first encountered Honey & Mumford’s thinking on Learning Styles which I found fascinating. It was as a result of my practical learning and getting to grips with the theory behind it that I secured my first role as a Training Manager.
Ever since then my roles have been focused on learning and development, enabling others to achieve and seeing the spark in someone’s eyes when they “get it” – whether that be through formal training delivery, continuous learning in the workplace or working with them as a Coach.
My focus has always been on making learning come to life by grounding it in practical reality. I keep myself up-to-date with the theory of learning and indeed of late I have been honoured to become a Fellow of the Institute of Training and Occupational Learning alongside being a Member of the Learning and Performance Institute and a Member of the Chartered Management Institute. But! Everything I do is focused on enabling people to learn and gain insights into themselves by keeping it simple!
That therefore is my aim with this blog about Learning and Development. To make learning and learning theory interesting, informative, enabling and accessible.