Enhancing your professional development shouldn’t be just a priority for you, it should be a priority for women of all ages at any career stage. Not only does professional development stimulate the mind, it also boosts your confidence and marketability by learning new skills you can apply to the world around you. The competition in the workplace is stiff for women, so expanding your resume with a wealth of knowledge and skills can make you a more attractive professional employee. However, many businesses don’t provide continuing professional development opportunities. What then? In today’s world of abundant online resources, you can further your professional development even if your employer doesn’t offer it. Here are our top 5 professional development resources to further your career.

Hubspot Academy

Hubspot is a well-known developer of customer relationship management (CRM) software. To connect with their customers and audiences, Hubspot began to offer free online video courses complete with quizzes and certifications in the areas of marketing and sales. You simply create an account and then select the courses you want to take. Classes include video modules, followed by a quiz to make sure you understood the video. At the end of the course, you take a final exam and if you pass, you receive a certificate. A few of the many certifications they offer include:

  • Inbound Certification
  • Content Marketing Certification
  • Email Marketing Certification
  • Inbound Sales Certification

Saylor Academy

From business to communication to professional development, there is a wealth of courses to choose from within Saylor Academy. Within the main courses are sub-categories of specific classes you can take. For example, under the heading “Business Administration”, you may select a course entitled, “Corporate Communication.” This course includes fifteen units, course syllabus, and downloadable textbook. The course takes about 120 hours to complete. At the end of the class, you take a free final exam and receive a certificate. You can even earn college credits with this class for a proctoring fee of $25.

Harvard Academics Extension School

Need more training in computer science? Harvard offers a free course entitled, “Intensive Introduction to Computer Science.” This series of video lectures doesn’t just teach you about computer science but helps you develop your reasoning and problem-solving skills. The video lectures coincide with the actual course of the semester. So, you can do it along with the rest of the students. The teacher for this semester is a dynamic speaker that makes learning this topic interesting.

TED Talks

Rather enrich your mind than gain skills right away? If you don’t want a full-blown academic-style course but still want to advance professionally, you can always create a playlist of TED Talks. This website offers a vast library of videos on just about every subject out there. Browse by topic or select from the most popular TED talks. TED Talks can range from just a few minutes to a half-hour or more, depending on the depth of the topic, so get prepared when you find one you’d like to watch. Some of the information is academic but there are plenty of personal-growth talks, as well.

Udemy

Udemy is unique in that any professional person can create a course and promote it on the Udemy platform. Instructors may charge a fee or offer it free. The website currently boasts of over 55,000 courses with topics ranging from personal development to web development to office productivity. When you arrive at the website, create an account and then explore by category or type your own topic in the search box. Many of the classes are free or as low as ten dollars. When you select the course in which you’re interested, you’ll be taken to a page that explains what you will get with the class. For example, a class called, “How to Build an Online Business” says it will take 11.5 hours, includes two articles, certification, and lifetime access to the course.

Whether you choose to enhance your technical skills or enrich your mind with knowledge, furthering your professional development is important and necessary in any career stage. Choose something that interests you, or go outside your comfort zone and try something new. While you’re at it, you may want to update your professional photo – you know, to reflect all that developing you’ve been doing! Plus, with new skills, you might be looking for new opportunities that arise. Contact our studio today to book your professional headshot!