2015 was a year of learning for me! Even after over a decade in PR, you never stop learning and developing. As a member of the CIPR, I decided this year to start my career personal developement (CPD).
Having signed up for the CIPR CPD at the start of the year I was concerned that I may not find the time to complete it by February. To be honest, that last 5 points did seem to be the worst, as I had left it a little late, but I am pleased to say I completed with 3 weeks to go.
When I initially logged on to see how you obtained points, I realised that there was an incredible amount of interesting, factual content right there in front of me. Some of it from over the last few years that is still massively relevant to the job we do today.
During my time completing my CPD, I found webinars on research and its use in PR – incredibly useful in my area of the industry and it was incredibly insightful. I also had access to resource links I probably would never have considered. One was a great book that I ordered from Kogan Page, I would encourage you all to get a copy of called Planning and Managing Public Relations Campaigns by Anne Gregory FCIPR. I couldn’t put it down! I read it in just a few days of commuting. It was insightful, factual and contained so much anecdotal information – it truly is a must read for PR pros. I have since completing my CPD ordered another of her paperbacks called Strategic Public Relations Leadership.
The most exciting thing about CPD is the range of things you can do online. Most webinars, on such a wide range of subjects, are only an hour long so are not overly time consuming. The last one I watched was on PR and SEO, something I thought I would find incredibly hard to follow. However the webinar included questions from the viewers at the end – which then answered most questions that I had written down whilst viewing. Andrew Smith made it easy to understand the topic and follow the conversation, spoke anecdotally and in layman’s terms when required. It was really helpful – and something I soon came to realise was typical of the webinars available to you from the CIPR.
What really pleased me when competing the various tasks on my CPD, was my keenness to do more and more. Time was against me for logging additional points, but during my various searches for the last 5 points, I found myself writing down seminars I should look out for/attend, networking events that interested me and more, so I have already started a plan for next year. My biggest regret was not attending more CIPR courses and events, so I have a plan in place to make sure I do in year two too.
Colleagues and clients asked me my main motivation for doing the CPD; aside from continuing to learn in an ever-growing and adapting industry, I want to be recognised as an industry professional by increasing my knowledge and understanding. My intention is to complete year two and get assessed to eventually become an Accredited Practitioner with the CIPR. Something I am driven to achieve and available to me thanks to CPD.
Account Director, The Relations Group