CPD: Underrated, abused and misunderstood?
Accountants are missing vital opportunities by misusing their CPD time. Professional development coach Carol McLachlan offers her seven top tips for making the most of your CPD activity.
Two and a half years ago I wrote a piece for AccountingWEB entitled The other P in CPD. Valiantly heralding a new era of learning for accountants, I prophesied a future where ‘P for personal’ would seriously rival its domineering sibling, ‘P for professional’. By 2008, with all CCAB¹ members compliant, IES7² was all set to usher in a brave new world - the end of 'all for one and one for all CPD', the dawn of role and person specific CPD, much more than mere technical prowess.
Here we are trudging towards the end of a grim 2010. Times being hard with more to come, I’m wondering how well are we playing this new game of 21st century CPD?
Some of the concerns presented by my clients and AccountingWEB members suggest we're simply not getting it:
- 'What course would you recommend for me to fulfil my CPD obligations?’
- ‘I never have time for technical reading’.
- ‘CPD always gets left until the last minute’.
- ‘I’ll just go on a course at the end of the year’.
- ‘Does this count as CPD?’
These might be anecdotal but they're not untypical and unfortunately they present an outdated view of CPD.
Smart CPD, integrated into our professional roles, planned and executed thoughtfully, adds value, helps us do our jobs better and makes our careers and indeed, our lives, easier, more fulfilling, more agreeable. Sceptical? Read on. It’s not too late to embrace the full glory of CPD.