You are on page 1of 14

Professional Development

For Strategic Managers

Table of Contents
1|Page

Executive Summary.........................................................................................................................3
Introduction......................................................................................................................................4
Task 1...............................................................................................................................................4
1.

Assessing personal and professional skills required to achieve strategic goals:..................4


1.1

Appropriate methods to evaluate personal skills to achieve strategic goals:................4

1.2

Techniques to assess the professional skills to support the strategic direction:............5

Task 2...............................................................................................................................................7
2.

Conducting a skills audit to identify learning style..............................................................7


2.1

Evaluation of the strategic skills needed to meet current and future leadership

requirements............................................................................................................................7
2.2

Applying appropriate techniques to identify preferred learning...................................8

Task 3.............................................................................................................................................10
3.

Implementing a personal development plan.......................................................................10


3.1

Constructing a personal development plan that meets the leadership development

requirements..........................................................................................................................10
3.2

Assessing the outcomes of personal development plan against personal work

objectives...............................................................................................................................11
3.3

Evaluation of the impact of own learning against the achievement of strategic goals11

Conclusion.....................................................................................................................................12
References......................................................................................................................................13

Executive Summary
In the process of management the manager usually requires a well set of combination of both
personal and professional skills. These skills include technical competencies, human resource
2|Page

management skills and also conceptual abilities and contribute to the achievement of strategic
goals. A successful manager possesses these qualities and contributes to the welfare of the
organization which is very crucial. It is important to conduct skill audit and a manager must
know how to coordinate with all the employees in a company. . It supports a person in
recognizing the current skills that the person have and also recognizes the skills that the person
can require in future. Skill audit helps in understanding the future needs and identifying learning
style. Personal development plan is a process which supports the work experience and by going
through this plan one can build and reflect his personal and professional development. It
provides a structured approach to decisions about what is needed to be done and also how to plan
to learn it. Constructing a personal development plan is necessary to achieve the strategic goals.

Introduction
In order to manage and execute the workload the manager need to have both personal skill and
professional skill. To achieve the strategic goals it is necessary to evaluate the personal skills and
3|Page

also to apply techniques to assess the professional skills. In this report the various learning style
will be discussed and the needed skills of a leader will be evaluated (Tovey, 2014). A personal
development plan will be implemented here with suitable methods. The impact of the own
learning against the achievement of the strategic goals will also be evaluated.

Task 1
1. Assessing personal and professional skills required to
achieve strategic goals:
In the process of management the manager usually requires a well set of combination of both
personal and professional skills. These skills include technical competencies, human resource
management skills and also conceptual abilities and contribute to the achievement of strategic
goals (Williams, 2009). Less importance should be given on technical competencies as the
organizations hierarchy progresses and more should be given on conceptual ability to achieve
the strategic goals. A successful manager possesses these qualities and contributes to the welfare
of the organization. The personal skills and the professional skills of the manager are assessed
below.
1.1

Appropriate

methods

to

evaluate

personal

skills

to

achieve strategic goals:


Personal skills are the abilities of the managers to do something and it is evaluated when the
manager is put through some trial in real life. These skills are somewhat inherent in every person
and based on these skills the person is benefited for a professional career. The required personal
skills in achieving strategic goals are evaluated below.
Time management: Time management is important for both in our personal life as well as
professional life which hold the key for personal success and professional success
(Schermerhorn, 2010). Time management is basically the process of development which
increases the efficiencies. A manager should use the time properly and analyse it to improve
productivity. He also should establish SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and
time based) objectives, minimize non-productive works, perform the tasks timely, prioritize the
workloads and also deal with the time wasters in order to achieve the goals of the organization.
4|Page

Effective delegation: Effective delegation refers to the process of entrusting responsibilities to


others and that should be logical. It establishes the relationship of the managers with the
subordinates and with the peers (Podolny et al,. 2011) It reduces the bottlenecks and ensures the
even flow of work. Effective delegation includes training and development and also evaluates the
performance of the subordinates.
Stress management: Stress management is considered as an essential skill for managerial
success and it generally comes in environment, organizational and individual factors which
involve uncertainty (Jeyarathnam, 2012). Stress can occur in many forms such as work demands,
leadership role, conflict within the organization etc. Manager should have the ability to control
these stress effectively to achieve the strategic goals.
Problem solving and decision making: A manager should have the ability to analyse the
problem, recognize the severity of the problem, find the most available solutions and also
evaluate the best solution to the problem (Ansoff, 2010). To achieve the business goal it is
necessary to take wise decisions for the firm and these skills should be inherent in an employee.
Effective communication: Communication skill is the primary factor which distinguishes one
individual from another. In a business or organization it becomes very necessary to convey
messages to the employees so that they can perform their duties better. A person should have
good listening, understanding and questioning skills which eventually provides better about the
customers and clients (Sadler, 2013). A good manager is capable of handling conflicts within the
organization to achieve the strategic goals.
1.2

Techniques to assess the professional skills to support

the strategic direction:


Professional skills are important in professional career. A high level of professional skill must be
inherent in a strategic manager to support the strategic decisions of the organization. There are so
many professional skills such as coaching, mentoring, multi tasking and leadership skills. These
skills will be assesses below:
Counselling and mentoring: Counselling and mentoring is an important factor in an
organization as it motivates the employees to achieve the organizations goals. It supports the

5|Page

staff with their own learning and development requirements which eventually results in better
outcome.
Coaching: Coaching is a skill that is a must have quality in any professional. As the world has
become competitive, it is very important for a manager to coach and lead his team. But a person
must have communication skill to accomplish coaching (Ansoff, 2010). A manager having the
coaching skill develops the efforts and transforms their team into the best one.
Leadership: Leadership skill is considered as a backbone for any professional. If a person has
leadership skill he/she can guarantee the success of the organization. It generally influences the
people to achieve the strategic gaol but the manager should have communication as well as time
management skill to effectively lead the people.
Multi tasking: A person should have multi-tasking skills as it is very important for professional
life. Performing different task in a limited time with efficiencies leads the company towards
success and time management skill plays an important role in this regard. The manager should
use occupational standards to identify competencies, continue self development for professional
bodies, deliver effective presentations etc (Sadler, 2013).
To achieve strategic goals it is important to ensure that the employees perform their job
effectively and also opportunities should be provided to meet the individual needs. While
responding to change or managing the stress the manager must ensure and improve flexibility
and adaptability (Brody and Davidson, 2008). It becomes necessary to use conceptual tools to
identify limitations and also strengths. The various networks, development programmes such as
CPD should be developed by the organization to achieve the strategic goals.

Task 2
2. Conducting a skills audit to identify learning style
It is important to conduct skill audit and a manager must know how to coordinate with all the
employees in a company. Basically it is an analysis of the employees current skills compared to
the previous that is both required in the current and future environment. It supports a person in
6|Page

recognizing the current skills that the person have and also recognizes the skills that the person
can require in future (Schermerhorn, 2010). Skill audit helps in understanding the future needs
and identifying learning style.
2.1

Evaluation of the strategic skills needed to meet current

and future leadership requirements


A company should form leadership strength both in current and future but for that they need
to identify the needed features of leadership. The various strategic skills needed to meet
current and future leadership requirements are assessed against relevant National
Occupational Standards (NOS) and NVQ competence standards.
Skills to develop strategies in the changing market: Various types of challenges are faced
by a company both in the current and the future market. But a company need to have
strategies to cope with these situations (Podolny et al,. 2011). In a competitive and highly
complex business environment it is necessary to find innovative methods of decision making
and developing strategies which will assist them to manage with pace.
Communication technology skills: As organizations are working across different countries
it is technology which has enabled the ability to work across borders. In an International
market there are dispersed offices with a number of employees who are bound to change
according to the culture. As leadership requirements the business must have skill about
communication strategies to carry out the leadership in the future (Jeyarathnam, 2012).
Skills about emerging market: A business must have skills in emerging market as they
think that it will carry out operations in the current market as well as in the future market. So
in making strategic decisions a business leader must have skills in the emerging market. If a
company aims optimal growth from emerging markets it must have a leader who understands
the working environments in the emerging market.
Performance review and mentoring: People developments are equally important in todays
world as most of the decisions are taken by teams. A company cannot alone face the
emerging market and the competitors rather it needs the help of its employees. The workforce
should be managed effectively and monitored and in this case leadership plays an important
role.
7|Page

Psychometric Tests
Various occupations require various abilities, competencies but the individuals differ from
those abilities (Brody and Davidson, 2008). There are several tests of intelligence that has
emerged in the psychological business. Those psychometric tests are described below:
Test of typical performance: Individuals typical performances are assessed in order to give
scenarios and individual choices and strength of feelings are indicated through answers
which identifies preferences such as personality assessment and interest inventories etc.
Test of maximum performance: Individual maximum performance is assessed in this test
and it includes ability and aptitude tests and judged either as right or wrong.
SWOT Analysis
The SWOT analysis of a leader lists the strength, weakness, opportunities and threats (Jeffs,
2013). The strengths are- time management, multi tasking, stress management, counselling
etc. weaknesses are- low quality education, effective delegation, negotiating, financial
resources etc. Opportunities are getting further education, career advancement, knowing
cross culture etc. Threats are competitors, panel of observers, changing laws etc.
2.2

Applying appropriate techniques to identify preferred

learning
It is important for the managers to understand the learning process and to identify preferred
learning style. Various methods have been introduced in this regard such as Kolbs learning
cycle, Honey and Mumford learning style questionnaires, Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI))
etc.
Honey and Mumford introduced a questionnaire that categorizes peoples preferred learning
styles into four categories such as activists, reflectors, theorists and pragmatists (Rhoton and
Shane, 2011). Activists are open minded and non-sceptic whereas reflectors are sceptic and
prefer to think thoroughly. Theorists are adaptive and well observers who thinks problem step by
step and pragmatists try out new ideas, theories and techniques. Pragmatists learning style is best
suited for a manager as it makes the learning more effective and efficient. Another style which is
Kolbs learning cycle is widely used in the organizations. In this cycle it is reflected that learning
8|Page

is endless and also identifies the significance of internalisation and reflection (David, 2011). It
helps to recognize problems and learners actively explore test the environment. The VARK
model is used for learning information and it includes four preferences. The visual preferences
include the depiction of information and the auditory mode describes the preference for
information. The read and write preference is information displayed for words and kinaesthetic
preference refers to the use of practical experience. The Myers Briggs type indicators also assess
the psychological preferences of people.
Though the VARK model is widely used in the organizations but it does not always make sense
of the world. The Kolbs learning style recognized four stages but these are assimilated and
distilled into abstract concept. Honey and Mumford learning style is also widely used in the
organizations and sometimes it is questioned that why a particular method is so successful.

Task 3
3. Implementing a personal development plan
Personal development plan is a process which supports the work experience and by going
through this plan one can build and reflect his personal and professional development (David,
2011). It provides a structured approach to decisions about what is needed to be done and also
how to plan to learn it. Constructing a personal development plan is necessary to achieve the
strategic goals.

9|Page

3.1

Constructing a personal development plan that meets the

leadership development requirements


There are various ways of developing a personal development plan and this will also meet the
leadership development requirements. It involves three steps to carry out a personal development
plan. First of all the leader must identify the requirements described in the skill audit before
proceeding further (Jeffs, 2013). Then he needs to identify the components of better development
such as communication skills, presentation skills, skill in the changing and emerging market,
mentoring and performance review skills and also he needs to focus on the overall goal of
leadership development. A SMART objective should be set to reflect the personal and
professional development plan.
Smart: Goals should be clearly defined and well written.
Measurable:

Goals should be measurable and it must have tangible evidence. Generally

measurable goals are short term.


Achievable: Goals should be challenging but achievable. It should be well defined so that it
could be achieved.
Result-focussed: Goals should be result focussed not activity focussed.
Time-bound: Goals should be timely and it also should make an applied sense of urgency. Goals
will not produce an favourable outcome without some urgencies.

Objectives

Actions

Resource

Time

Learn how to deal Practicing in front Online research


with

critical of

shadow

situation in more management


effective way.

or

audience.
Do some relevant
training
Do

12 weeks

Find address and


contact detail
Contact

with

different

training

centre.
relevant

10 | P a g e

courses
Making

sure Update daily note

employees

5 weeks

with line manager.

appraisals
complete
Registered

with Filling

professional body

registration Online research on 4 weeks

form and submit


Received
confirmation

professional

body

website.
Telephone
communication
Emailing them

Select

relevant Check ACCA and

course with role

24 weeks

CIMA website for


detail information

Generally a leader uses the principles of leadership development for implementing personal
learning. Further step in this process is to develop a plan and after that deciding on the strategies
to exclude from the plan to achieve the strategic goal.
3.2

Assessing the outcomes of personal development plan

against personal work objectives


Staff members set personal development goals to increase the ability of contributing to the
organizations success. The accomplishment of these goals gives a base for career success and
the employees ought to be motivated and also excited about achieving these goals. Performance
management ensures the development of superior workforce with the help of professional
development plan. But the only limitation to the growth is the ability to hire the superior
workforce (Rhoton and Shane, 2011). Motivating goals motivates people and increases the
chances of success and assists to overcome obstacles. After setting the motivating goals the
required actions must be taken because without actions the achievement cannot be expected. The
manager or leaders need to notice the opportunities that come their way to achieve the strategic
goals. Attention should be given to opportunities to grow in the firm. They must be willing to
11 | P a g e

take detours if something does not work properly. There should be acknowledgement for
successes as acknowledgment encourages the workforce to perform better and motivates towards
goals. It is necessary to write down the successes throughout the day. The personal development
plan results in better personal work objectives.
3.3

Evaluation of the impact of own learning against the

achievement of strategic goals


The personal development has been implemented for a shorter period of time and the learning
played an important role in achieving the strategic goals. . The skills discussed in the personal
development plan plays a very vital role in achieving the strategic objectives. Presentation skills
are important when someone works at retail stores and it is pivotal to work and develop the
presentation skill in order to get better control on the work objectives. Getting feedbacks from
the peers and the subordinates are important as it helps in improving the learning and also helps
to find out the weak points (Tovey, 2014). The interpersonal skills such as communication, time
management and problem solving play a significant role in the professional and personal life.
Communication skills are very important in achieving the strategic goals. As time management
helps to manage time effectively it makes the aims and objective plans as well. Through the
decision making skill the understanding about certain things has been improved which is
necessary to achieve the goals. Through delegation the team work has been more improved and
the employees have learned to interact more effectively than before (Williams, 2009). Personal
development plan is a way through which an individual draws up a plan that will assist in future
prospective.

Conclusion
In this report the various skills- both personal and professional of a manager has been discussed
along with appropriate techniques and methods. The different learning styles such as Flemmings
VARK model, Honey and Mumford learning style, Kolbs learning cycle ,MBTI etc. have been
described and also been criticized here. Finally a personal development plan has been
implemented with suitable methods and the impacts of own learning against the achievement of
strategic goals have been evaluated.

12 | P a g e

References
Ansoff, H. (2010). Strategic management. New York: Wiley.
Brody, C. and Davidson, N. (2008). Professional development for cooperative learning. Albany:
State University of New York Press.
David, F. (2011). Strategic management. New York: Macmillan.
Dess, G. and Miller, A. (2011). Strategic management. New York: McGraw-Hill.
Jeffs, C. (2013). Strategic management. Los Angeles: SAGE.
Jeyarathnam, M. (2012). Strategic management. Mumbai: Himalaya Pub. House.
Rhoton, J. and Shane, P. (2011). Professional development. Arlington, VA: NSTA Press.

13 | P a g e

Sadler, P. (2013). Strategic management. Sterling, VA: Kogan Page.


Saloner, G., Shepard, A. and Podolny, J. (2011). Strategic management. New York: John Wiley.
Schermerhorn, J. (2010). Management. New York: J. Wiley.
Special Issue of Strategic Organization: "Strategic Management Theory and Universities".
(2015). Strategic Organization, 13(2), pp.163-165.
Tovey, R. (2014). Professional development. Cambridge, MA: Harvard College.
Williams, K. (2009). Strategic management. New York, N.Y: DK Pub.

14 | P a g e