|Professional development is important because it introduces students to the "culture" and "practice" of business. Cultures and practices vary by company, by industry, and by country. It is important to be aware of how you can best fit into the culture and learn the practices of your company industry and of the country in which you do business.
The CSPD in the College of Business focuses on several elements of professional development.
First, we focus on image development and enhancement.
- How do you present yourself in formal and informal situations? These situations may include the job interview, the company picnic and your annual evaluation.
- How do you present yourself in both written and oral communications? These communications include your résumé and bio, e-mail communications at work, annual reports, presentations, introductions, conferences and more.
- How do you present yourself to people of different cultures and generations? You are probably aware that you should be more formal with your company CEO than you would with your co-workers but do you know how to introduce yourself, how to introduce others and how to work within the hierarchy of your company? If you work with different cultures, do you know how they prefer to hear ideas? Do you know how much socializing they do before they get down to business?
Second, we focus on industry and career awareness to answer questions such as these:
- Are you knowledgeable in all the industries that might need your particular skills?
- Are you aware of the many career paths you might take within your chosen industry?
- What industries and job titles will be most in demand in the future?
- What draws you to a particular industry or career path?
Third we focus on leadership and personal development because your education doesn’t stop when you graduate. No matter what career path you follow, the leadership and management challenges you will face may become more complex as your responsibilities grow. Begin now; invest your time in learning the latest management, leadership and productivity advancements so that you can help your company when problems arise.
In short, professional development gives students the knowledge, skills and attitudes that will help them make the transition from student to professional, and help them advance in their chosen career path.