6 Examples of Professional Development Goals for Work (2023)

As humans, we like to set goals for ourselves in the search of becoming a better person or having a better life. Professionally speaking, we can have a specific position or business in our minds, and we want to work towards achieving those goals. But as most humans, you probably also feel a little lost and don’t know where to start or what you need to start. Well, worry no more! We’re here to help you out on this quest!

Table of contents:

  1. Intro
  2. What are Professional Development Goals?
  3. What are the Skills I Need to Learn to Increase my Professional Development?
  4. Professional Development Examples

There’s a popular saying that goes “One never stops learning”. And that has always been true, but more so nowadays that everything moves so fast. Technology changes every day and there are constant breakthroughs in every branch of science that practically force us to keep updating our knowledge and skills. We cannot fall behind.

6 Examples of Professional Development Goals for Work (1)

Success doesn’t happen overnight. The difference between a person who’s continuously advancing professionally and one who is stuck in their career is their ability to set, work and achieve professional development goals.

To know if you’re content with your current professional status, ask yourself the following questions: Are you happy with the way things are right now? Do you know what you’re doing? Are you satisfied with your daily activities and how you complete them? Is your career moving in the right direction? Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?

If your answers don't make you feel excited about your future, then you might be stuck professionally.

What are Professional Development Goals?

Basically, they are professional goals that trace a map of your career to guide you in the right direction. The purpose of these career goals is to increase your knowledge and skills and be better prepared.

(Video) 7 examples for setting professional development goals at work, what are professional growth goals

We need to be smart about our future, and knowledge doesn’t always come for free. So make peace with the idea of investing in yourself and enhancing your potential to be a top choice for employers and have a competitive advantage. Onceyou gather the knowledge and skills, you should demonstrate your competency, for instance bycreating an online portfolio. This can only bring you success and provide not only professional but personal development as well; but again, it doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time and a lot of effort.

What are the Skills I Need to Learn to Increase my Professional Development?

  1. Written Communication

    Written communication skills are necessary for writing emails, chatting with others through instant messaging tools, posting on social media for your business, or completing a project.

  2. Leadership

    Leadership training helps instill individuals with more confidence, leads to higher-level opportunities and positions in many instances, and is undeniably beneficial to organizations. Leadership skills can be developed through courses, mentoring, apprenticeships, and even on-the-job experience.

    (Video) Goals for Professional Development (5 Types of Goals with Examples)

  3. Organization

    Improving your organizational skills can help you be more productive and efficient at work, saving you time and energy to put back into other projects.

  4. Creativity

    Creative thinking and problem solving are valuable skills to have for both day-to-day work and long-term visions in the workplace.

  5. Interpersonal

    Interpersonal skills help us communicate and interact with one another, and when done well, these skills help us communicate more effectively and create professional relationships.

  6. Conflict Resolution

    Risk-free and healthy conflict resolutions are necessary for all work environments, whether you work on a team, interact with clients, or both. Conflicts and disagreements are bound to happen and are a healthy and necessary part of working with others when handled appropriately.

  7. Time Management

    The better you manage your time, the more effectively you’ll be able to meet deadlines, manage your workload, and keep your stress levels down.

  8. Active Listening

    Active listening refers to the ability to listen to someone completely, understand what they’re saying, and comprehend their message so that you can recall what they said later. This soft skill will help you increase your value professionally, and comes with many benefits, including connection-building, instilling trust from others, and improving your knowledge base and understanding.

  9. Problem Solving

    No matter what industry you're familiar with, problems are bound to arise in your job. In your professional path, you'll surely encounter a variety of problems, and for you to overcome them successfully, you need to add problem-solving to your toolkit since it's a very valuable skill.Leadership is defined by your ability to problem solve and keep your entire team aligned and own the solution.

  10. Industry Knowledge

    Understanding the idiosyncrasies of your industry - and your organization's position within it is critical to any organization's success.

    (Video) 7 examples for setting professional development goals at work, what are professional growth goals.

Professional Development Examples

Even though your goals should be tailored to your personal aims, we’ve put together 8 examples to give you an idea of career goals you can work towards. When setting professional development goals, it is vastly recommended to use the SMART goals framework to make it easier for you to accomplish those targets you’re striving for.

  1. Complete Leadership Training Before the End of the Quarter

    Like we said before, one never stops learning! And since knowledge is power, we strongly encourage you to find new skills to learn and master, especially ones that fit your position and will make you better at your job or are required for those positions you aspire to get. In this regard, consider using tools like a screen monitoring software to track your efficiency.

    Investing time to learn new skills will improve your worth and place you ahead of your colleagues. You’ll have more accomplishments to razzle-dazzle your resume with, and even create a stand-out cover letter, allowing you to land better jobs or start your own business.

  2. Take on More Responsibilities at Work

    Always try to go the extra mile instead of just doing what’s in your job description. If you take on more managerial responsibilities you’ll get noticed and this will provide you with a stepping stone into leadership positions. Ask your manager what are those areas of opportunity you need to work on and which extra responsibilities you can assume to improve them.

    You can also just evaluate what are those little things that everyone complains about and step up and take care of them. Doing tasks that no one else is willing to do will put you in the spotlight, give you a lot of recognition and shape your leadership skills for future roles. Also, it will definitely look great on your next performance review.

  3. Improve Public Speaking by the End of the Year

    If you’re interested in growing professionally, you definitely cannot afford to have stage fright. As you develop your career, you’re often going to find yourself doing from daily stand-up meetings to presentations, giving pep talks, and building relationships. Great public speaking skills allow you to engage and communicate successfully with your audience (well, in this case, your team!), and to motivate and inspire those around you.

  4. Learn the New Version of [Software] by Next Month

    Since technology moves so fast, new versions and improvements of everything appear every day. In this specific matter, if there are certain tools you need for your career goals and professional development, you cannot stop updating your knowledge on them. Set a specific time frame for you to update your digital skills every time you need to do so, and be consistent.

  5. Learn Stress Management Techniques

    Stress management is something we all need to learn to benefit our well-being. But for professional development and for an aspiring leader, it will give you the tools to manage conflict resolution and problem solving in the most efficient way. You’ll learn how to solve situations with a clear head and help others whenever they feel overwhelmed or stuck with a project or task.

    (Video) Setting Professional Goals | Performance Development Framework

  6. Attend a Convention in my Industry Next Year

    Conventions are a great way to get to know everything about your professional path and other people’s points of view regarding your interests. You can see how your competitors are doing and what they’re focusing on, what your organization is missing, or how you could learn from others. Not to mention the outstanding amount of interpersonal and professional relationships you can make that can help lift your career.

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6 Examples of Professional Development Goals for Work (3)

And there you have it. Deciding on your career goals is the first step to begin developing both personally and professionally. Write your goals down somewhere visible so you can constantly motivate yourself and hold yourself accountable. This will increase your chances of success.

If you’re a manager, we strongly recommend having development conversations with your team and helping them establish development goals and work towards achieving them. Using a tool like Hirebook allows you to keep track of their objectives, their progress and have useful conversations, resulting in great engagement and performance.

(Video) SMART Goals Quick Overview with 21 SMART Goals Examples


What are your professional development goals answer? ›

How to answer "What is your professional development plan?"
  1. Think about your overall career goals. ...
  2. Consider what development opportunities can help you achieve your goals. ...
  3. Discuss your professional journey. ...
  4. Outline both your short-term and long-term goals. ...
  5. Explain your plan. ...
  6. Align your plan with organizational goals.
3 Jan 2022

What are some examples of professional development goals? ›

10 examples of professional development goals
  • Develop a new skill set. ...
  • Develop your workplace skills. ...
  • Take up leadership responsibilities. ...
  • Expand your professional network. ...
  • Level-up your credentials. ...
  • Consume media in your field. ...
  • Find other ways to deepen job satisfaction. ...
  • Take a relevant course.
4 Nov 2022

What are the 5 smart goals examples for work? ›

SMART Goals - Examples
  • Overcome Your Fear of Presenting. I will build my confidence to deliver presentations so I can do so with less anxiety. ...
  • Be a Better Coach. I will improve my coaching skills. ...
  • Build Your Network. ...
  • Improving Productivity. ...
  • Become a Leader. ...
  • Be a Strategic Thinker.

How do you write Development goals for work examples? ›

Examples of personal development goals for work
  • Improve your time management.
  • Develop emotional intelligence.
  • Cultivate resilience.
  • Listen actively.
  • Develop a growth mindset.
  • Develop a reading habit.
  • Learn new things.
  • Improve your public speaking skills.

What are the 5 areas of professional development? ›

One such tactic is offering professional development opportunities.
Below are the top five.
  • Management and leadership training. ...
  • Professional certifications. ...
  • Technical skills training. ...
  • Teamwork and interpersonal skills training.

What is a good professional goal? ›

One of the most common professional goals is obtaining higher credentials in your industry, which can create new employment and salary opportunities. For example, if you already have a bachelor's degree in civil engineering, you can pursue a master's degree to become a professor at the local university.

What are the 8 development goals? ›

The 8 Millennium Development Goals
  • Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger.
  • Achieve universal primary education.
  • Promote gender equality and empower women.
  • Reduce child mortality.
  • Improve maternal health.
  • Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria, and other diseases.
  • Ensure environmental sustainability.

What are the five development goals? ›

The Sustainable Development Goals were adopted by the United Nations in 2015 as a call-to-action for people worldwide to address five critical areas of importance by 2030: people, planet, prosperity, peace, and partnership.

What are the 6 types of goals? ›

Six Types of Goals Everyone Should Consider Making
  • Financial. Financial issues are a major source of stress. ...
  • Career. Most of us spend 40+ hours each week at a job of some sort. ...
  • Adventure. ...
  • Self-Development. ...
  • Health. ...
  • Long-term.
11 Apr 2021

What should I put for development areas at work? ›

7 Key employee development areas
  • Flexibility.
  • Communication skills.
  • Bonus: Conflict Resolution, Tactfulness, Work ethic.
  • Leadership Skills.
  • Organizational Skills.
  • Creativity Skills.
  • Bonus: Stress Management.
30 Dec 2021

What are the 7 areas of development? ›

We'll now take a brief look at each of these 7 areas and why they are important.
  • Communication and language development. ...
  • Physical development. ...
  • Personal, social, and emotional development. ...
  • Literacy development. ...
  • Mathematics. ...
  • Understanding the world. ...
  • Expressive arts and design.
3 Sept 2016

What are the 7 categories of professionalism? ›

The eight core characteristics of professionalism are: Competence, Knowledge, Conscientiousness, Integrity, Respect, Emotional Intelligence, Appropriateness, and Confidence.

What are 3 main ideas around professional development? ›

Good professional development ideas for work include management skills, communication, and performance management.

What are the 7 Aspects of good goals? ›

Feed Your Mind
  • However, what kinds of goals? ...
  • Specific – A specific goal has a much greater chance of being accomplished than a general goal. ...
  • Attainable. ...
  • Measurable. ...
  • Written. ...
  • Realistic – To be realistic, a goal must represent an objective toward which you are both willing and able to work. ...
  • Accountable. ...
  • Deadlined.
18 Apr 2016

What are the most common development goals? ›

High levels of income and better quality of life is a developmental goal common to all. HDI measures the average income, health and education.
  • High levels of income and better quality of life is a developmental goal common to all.
  • HDI measures the average income, health and education.

What are the basic goals of development? ›

Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger. Achieve universal primary education. Promote gender equality. Reduce child mortality.

What are the two types of development goals? ›

Answer. Development goals may be common,differentor conflicting: 1)common goals:there are some needs which are common to all like income,freedom,equality,security,respect friendship,etc 2) different goals:development or progress does not mean the same thing for every individual.

Why are the 17 goals important? ›

The SDGs provide worldwide guidance for addressing the global challenges facing the international community. It is about better protecting the natural foundations of life and our planet everywhere and for everyone, and preserving people's opportunities to live in dignity and prosperity across generations.

What is the most important sustainable development goal? ›

The SDGs aim to end all forms of hunger and malnutrition by 2030, making sure all people–especially children–have sufficient and nutritious food all year. This involves promoting sustainable agricultural, supporting small-scale farmers and equal access to land, technology and markets.

What are the 6 major goals of sustainability? ›

The Sustainable Development Goals are the blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all. They address the global challenges we face, including poverty, inequality, climate change, environmental degradation, peace and justice. Learn more and take action.

What are the 6 Millennium development goals? ›

The United Nations Millennium Declaration, signed in September 2000, commits world leaders to combat poverty, hunger, disease, illiteracy, environmental degradation, and discrimination against women.

What is the target 7 of the sustainable development goal? ›

Sustainable Development Goal 7 (SDG7) calls for “affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all” by 2030. It's three core targets are the foundation for our work: Ensure universal access to affordable, reliable and modern energy services.

How do you set professional goals for yourself? ›

How to set and achieve professional goals
  1. Consider your ideal career. To set effective career goals, knowing what your preferred career is a strong first step. ...
  2. Analyze your skills. ...
  3. Use the SMART method. ...
  4. Combine short- and long-term goals. ...
  5. Share your goals with others. ...
  6. Celebrate your small successes.

What are 10 short term goals? ›

Short-Term Goals List
  • Exercising more.
  • Losing weight.
  • Saving money.
  • Eating a better diet.
  • Pursuing career ambitions.
  • Spending more time with family.
  • Taking up a new hobby.
  • Spending less time on social media.

What are common goals examples? ›

100 Life Goals Ideas
  • Become an inspiration to others.
  • Master a difficult skill.
  • Become a thought leader in your industry.
  • Get promoted to an executive role at your company.
  • Learn about how to become a millionaire.
  • Go on a trip around the world.
  • Travel to your dream country.
  • Double your personal income.

How do you write a professional goal? ›

WHAT are professional SMART goals
  1. Specific: Try and answer who, what, when, where, why, and/or how.
  2. Measurable: A clear metric or result that will show you have accomplished it.
  3. Attainable: Stretches you just enough, but is still possible.
  4. Relevant: Connects to your true direction.
12 Apr 2021

What is a good work goal for 2022? ›

A great choice for a professional goal in 2022 is to grow your network. More than ever, opportunities often come down to getting to know the right people. Make sure your networking goal is specific to your situation.

What 3 skills and capabilities would you like to further develop? ›

22 Jun 2013

What can you develop in the workplace? ›

Examples of skills you can develop for the workplace
  • Communication. Communication is an essential skill to enhance your career. ...
  • Creativity. ...
  • Management. ...
  • Commercial awareness. ...
  • Problem-solving. ...
  • Organisational skills. ...
  • Technical. ...
  • Learning.

What are the 3 most important areas of development for you professionally? ›

7 Key employee development areas
  • Flexibility.
  • Communication skills.
  • Bonus: Conflict Resolution, Tactfulness, Work ethic.
  • Leadership Skills.
  • Organizational Skills.
  • Creativity Skills.
  • Bonus: Stress Management.
30 Dec 2021

What could I improve on at work? ›

Other 18 areas of improvement at work
  • Improve your time management. ...
  • Try to do important tasks first. ...
  • Set clear goals. ...
  • Improve your communication skills. ...
  • Don't try to do your own, delegate. ...
  • Make use of the right tools. ...
  • Give yourself down time. ...
  • Encourage desk cleanliness and organization.
17 Jan 2022

What should I put for areas of improvement? ›

Areas of improvement for employees
  • Time management. The better people can multitask, meet deadlines and manage their time, the more productive they will be at work. ...
  • Customer service. ...
  • Teamwork. ...
  • Interpersonal skills. ...
  • Communication. ...
  • Writing. ...
  • Organization. ...
  • Flexibility.

What are the 4 main areas of development? ›

Children grow and develop rapidly in their first five years across the four main areas of development. These areas are motor (physical), language and communication, cognitive and social/emotional.

What is professional development in the workplace examples? ›

There are many ways that an employee can work on their professional development, such as taking classes, going to workshops or teaching themselves new skills. Professional development can also refer to staying up to date on new trends within your field and applying new practices to your current methods.

What are the two types of professional development goals? ›

Job-specific goals have to do with tasks that are part of an employee's job responsibilities. Skill-set goals are broader than job-specific goals, but are still related to what a person does.


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