- If possible take out a subscription to a professional journal in your field of specialization, or try to identify a library that stocks such a journal, so that you can keep up to date with advancements in your field.
- It is important that you make sure that you are fully up to date with current business and organizational issues. Read relevant papers, articles and magazines to ensure that you are fully aware of new opportunities and developing practices. When you read you should ask yourself if there are any ideas that you could apply to your work.
- Consider setting yourself a target to improve your knowledge in one particular area of your work every month. Make a note in your diary of six main areas and allocate one per month starting tomorrow. Steps to achieve this could entail reading a relevant chapter in a specialist textbook or journal each month.
- Identify one or two books to read from the reading list below and set aside a particular time each day or week to read from these.
Recommended Reference Books
- 50 Activities For Self-Development: A Companion Volume to The Unblocked Manager; (1990) by Dave Francis and Mike Woodcock; Human Resource Development Press - While exploring aspects of managerial competence, this book focuses on increasing management effectiveness by applying new principles of management education to individual managers and groups.
- How to Be an Even Better Manager; (2004) by Michael Armstrong; Kogan Page -Covering 50 key aspects of management, this clear-cut book provides sound guidelines to help anyone to develop a broad base of managerial skills and knowledge, and contains chapters on managing people, project management, and enhancing personal skills.
- The Concise Time Management and Personal Development; (2003) by John Adair and Melanie Allen; Thorogood - Written for managers and business leaders at all levels, this practical book offers valuable tools, techniques and a framework for continuing personal development useful for appraisals, interviews, and planning career progression or a change of direction.
- Strategic Career Management: Developing Your Talent; (2008) by Jane Yarnall; Elsevier Science and Technology Books, Inc. - Written from the organizational perspective, this book takes a practical approach to help you make strategic career management work both for the talent you want to retain and for the organization they work in.
- 25 Best Practices in Learning & Talent Development; (2007) by Nick van Dam; e-Learning for Kids Foundation - Featuring a concise collection of best practices that have been implemented within leading enterprises and business schools around the world, this fresh, new book offers a universe of ideas for all involved in the field of learning and talent development.
- Understanding Action Learning; (2007) by Judy O'Neil and Victoria J. Marsick; AMACOM - Combining top-shelf research with real-world experience, this book discusses several different approaches to learning and enables the reader to make an informed decision about which one or combination to use in his or her organization.
- ASTD Handbook for Workplace Learning Professionals; (2009) by Elaine Biech (ed); ASTD - Bringing together authors who represent the best practitioners in the field, this go-to resource and reference guide is packed full of key methodologies, practices, and procedures on training design and delivery, analyzing needs, e-learning, and more.
- Discovery: Extraordinary Results from Everyday Learning; (2005) by John Drysdale; Cyan Communications Ltd. - Drawing on original research, interviews, and experience working with successful businesspeople across a wide range of companies, this guide explains that valuable lessons can be found in unexpected places simply by knowing how and where to look.
- Leaders: Start to Finish: A Road Map for Developing and Training Leaders at all Levels; (2005) by Anne Bruce; ASTD - For any organization determined to build world-class leaders in today's competitive marketplace, this is a hands-on, how-to, no-nonsense reference and informative guide for developing and training leadership in cutting-edge environments, large and small.
- Handbook of Organizational Learning and Knowledge; (2001) by Meinolf Dierkes (ed) and et al.; Oxford University Press (UK) - This comprehensive resource examines all the intricacies of organizational learning, and its path for the future.
- Learning in Tough Economic Times: How Corporate Learning is Meeting the Challenges; (2009) by The American Society for Training & Development; ASTD - Presenting compelling information on best practices organizations are using to cope with financial uncertainty, this study provides real data, ideas, and tools you can implement to be a strategic partner and help position your organization for success.
- Learning as Transformation: Critical Perspectives on a Theory in Progress; (2004) by J. Mezirow; San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.
Recommended Skill Briefs (available through UNSkillport.com)
- The Learning Culture and the Benefits of Feedback: Explore the learning culture and the benefits of feedback.
- Understanding Continuous Learning: Learn how continuous learning is good for business.
- Understanding the Learning Curve: Learn how to traverse the learning curve.
- Understanding Your Learning Strategy: Discover your own learning style.
- Understanding Learning Options: Explore learning needs and learning options.
- The Five Levels of Learning: Explore the five levels of learning.
- Understanding Maslow's Learning Cycle: Explore Maslow's four-stage learning cycle.
- Understanding Self-directed Learning: Explore some aspects of self-directed learning.
- Understanding Self-directed Learning Material: Learn about effective self-directed learning material.
- When to Use Self-directed Learning: Explore the factors to consider for self-directed learning.
- Identifying Self-directed Learning Competencies: Learn about competencies needed for self-directed learning.
- Understanding Self-directed Learning at Work: Discover components of self-directed learning at work.
- Troubleshooting Self-directed Learning: Explore possible problems with your self-directed learning program.
- Exploring Self-directed Learning: Discover the basic characteristics of self-directed learning.
- Common Practices of Learning Organizations: Discover the common practices of learning organizations.
- Characteristics of a Learning Organization: Discover the three characteristics of a learning organization.
- Learning from Feedback: Learn to advance your career by capitalizing on feedback.
- Understanding the Learning Process: Explore how the learning process can help in times of change.
- Encouraging Learning: Explore ways to encourage the development of new knowledge.
- Fostering a Positive Attitude toward Learning: Learn how to approach learning with a more positive attitude.
- Leadership and Learning: Explore traits that support performance improvement.
- Understanding Corporate Culture and Learning: Learn how corporate culture influences individual improvement.
- Identify Management Roles in a Learning Organization: Explore management roles and skills in learning organizations.
- Identifying a Learning Culture: Discover factors that point to a learning management culture.
- Building Learning Relationships: Learn to identify the right people for the right questions.
- Understanding Learning Plans: Explore the components of a self-directed learning plan.
- A 3-step Approach to Adaptive Learning: Discover a 3-step approach to adaptive learning.
- Creating Your Learning Strategy: Explore the learning strategy section of a learning plan.
- Establishing Your Learning Objectives: Learn how to set effective learning objectives.
- Identify Your Learning Needs: Explore the career assessment section of a learning plan.
- Learning from Your Mistakes: Mistakes can be useful! Find out how to learn from them.
- Adult Learning and Resistance: Discover how to overcome resistance to learning in adults.
- Learning Actively: Master the three skills involved in active listening.
- Opportunities for Learning: Explore formal and non-formal learning opportunities.
- Learning Styles, Curves, and Levels: Explore the characteristics of learning.
- Four Types of Learning Styles: Learn about the four types of learning styles.
Other Reference Books
- Building Personal Effectiveness for Business Success (1998) by P.R. Timm published by Logan Page
- Creating Your Future - Personal Strategic Planning for Professionals (1992) by GL. Morrisey published by Berrett-Koehler Publishers
- A Manager's Guide to Self Development (1994 - 3rd Ed.) by M. Pedler, J. Burgoyne and T. Bodyell published by McGraw-Hill
- Cadres et Dirigeants Efficaces by T. Gordon published by Belfond (French)
- La Gestion de Soi by A-M. Laprote-Castelnau and B. Laporte-Darbans published by ESF (French)
There are a number of Internet based web-sites that provide a useful source of information about publications, training opportunities and resources, as well as on-line training. Although the quality of these web-sites does vary some examples of interesting web-sites include:
- ask Eric - Educational Resources Information
This is the largest education database on the World Wide Web. It contains more than 850,000 records of journal articles, research reports, curriculum and teaching guides, conference papers and books. Each year approximately 30,000 new records are added. The ERIC database is available in many formats at hundreds of locations.
- TeleCampus - An International Online Course Database
TeleCampus is a distance learning network in the Canadian province of New Brunswick. It has created an international online course database of more than 9,000 courses. The database contains the most comprehensive listing of fully online courses available anywhere. It includes public and private sources at all levels from more than 15 countries and includes only those courses that can be completed fully on-line.
This web-site links you to 3,000 online newspapers, world phone directories and world maps.