Remote personal development toolkit

A manager’s guide to using the remote personal development template effectively.

Focus on what you can control—don’t let personal development fall by the wayside.

Even as social distancing mandates have kept most of us working remotely and unable to continue our regular after-work activities, it’s important to keep our goals in mind. Personal development can’t fall by the wayside—for you or any of your people.

We’ve developed this toolkit to help you brainstorm growth avenues amid all the restrictions and uncertainty. It includes a remote personal development template (which you can download below) and this manager’s guide. 

The toolkit focuses on five straightforward areas of development: 

  • Business skills
  • Career goals
  • Behaviors
  • Role
  • Personal well being 


This is just a starting point for managers.
 It’s designed to get the wheels turning and explore all possible options for personal and professional growth. It’s important to encourage employees to prioritize a few specific goals based on what makes sense for each individual. 

That said, here’s a quick primer on how to use each section of the template:

Business skills

Think about business skills as they pertain to your organization in its current form, but also as they might apply to future endeavors. It’s important people have an understanding of: 

  • Updates to products and services
  • Your organizational structure (especially if it’s changed)
  • Company initiatives and opportunities to participate

Behaviors

Encourage your team members to be self-aware and rate themselves on:

  • Their own leadership and core values
  • Stretching their natural behaviors
  • How they’re handling remote work

Career goals

Keeping an eye on career goals is especially important if your company has a growth culture. If you put that on freeze, your culture could erode. Encourage employees’ longer-term aspirations through:

  • The creation of a 5-year plan
  • Workshops and certifications they can attend virtually/safely
  • Virtual networking and leaning on mentors

Role

Discuss how people feel they’re doing with:

  • The core responsibilities of their role
  • Being proactive and efficient

Personal well being

Be sure to devote time to people stuff, too. Talk about non-work goals, stressors, and motivators. Encourage people to continue driving toward their best selves, while also being fair in their personal assessments. It’s not an easy time for anyone, after all.


Following up

Regardless of where you focus, it’s equally important to document and track development goals. Make sure to touch base regularly and note employees’ progress with the priorities that have been established. 

Remote engagement can be complicated. People aren’t sure what they’re feeling or where they ought to be focused when so much is indefinite. A simplified personal development plan can help ease these feelings.

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