Our goals can be big and bold, but hard to keep on track. Bring your development to life with these small steps.

You probably want to develop and be better at work everyday. Maybe it’s the perfect job or promotion you’re after. Or simply a desire to feel more confident in what you’re doing. You’re certainly not alone.

Often though, our development goals slip to the back of our mind. Life gets in the way. Other things take priority. And before we know it, months have gone by without any action or progress!

Why is that? Well, most of the time it’s because we keep development high level, big-picture and abstract. We fail to see it in concrete terms and as something that’s habitual.

Work on my public speaking. Be more assertive. Get on top of my workload.

Sounds familiar, right? Big and bold, but ambitious and hard to get to grips with sometimes. Smaller things that are easier to digest take priority, like emails! The things right in front of us steal our time and attention.

Now it’s time to make development small, digestible and tangible enough to be front of mind too.

Bringing development to life.

Some of us are good at staying focused on our development. Bravo! But most of us aren’t. So development needs to be something we do every day, like buying a hot drink on the way into work. Something that starts small and is done routinely. And just like free coffee stamps, every now and again we’ll see the benefits of habitual activity.

Thinking small.

Obvious times to reflect on development? The beginning of the day, the evening before or the end of the weekend. It needn’t take long. Just some thoughts on what’s coming up for you – the opportunities to stretch yourself, the chances to learn, the new experiences where you can test out things or challenge yourself.

  • An important meeting with a client or colleague? Is there an opportunity to practice your negotiation skills or to try out being more assertive?
  • A high profile pitch coming up on Tuesday? Is there a chance to hone your communication skills? How about practicing beforehand and getting some feedback? Or having a quick review of techniques to make a presentation land?
  • What about that difficult conversation you’ve been putting off? Is there a chance to get ready for it? Could this be the week to get familiar with conflict?

Keeping it front of mind.

An essential part of development is knowing where you’re up to. This means recording what you’re doing and how you’re doing it. Journaling, taking simple notes, quick reflections. It all counts on route to creating your portfolio of development.

It could be as simple as starting by writing a few sentences everyday. Within WiseAmigo Spotlights you’ve scrapbooks for capturing thoughts or saving great links. So in no time at all, you’ll see your reflections neatly placed under the right area of your development. Improving my communication. Managing my time. Being more resilient.

Wondering what to start with? See posts from our community on the WiseAmigo app and on our blog. According to LinkedIn, business leaders want you to focus on communication, collaboration and time management. Oh, and leadership, but that’s a myriad of different skills…

Simple, small things.

I’ve written before that there are no badges or certificates with development. It’s different to learning something. It’s harder to feel and see progress – which is why it’s critical to track and reflect on it.

Documenting your progress will help you to move beyond a-ha moments and show that you’re gradually growing and feeling better about aspects of your development. Like a project plan is essential for a project, think of these as small steps in your development project.

Good luck and let us know how it’s going.

Development is a journey and the WiseAmigo app is here to help you along the way. Join the WiseAmigo community, create a Spotlight, discover more insightful content and bring your development to life today.