Create Your Growth Plan—Part 4: Audio, Seminars, Certifications and Classes

In this blog, I want to talk to you briefly about several important areas that should be considered when creating your growth plan: audio lessons and audio books, seminars, certifications and classes.

growth plan

Even if you don’t plan to partake in these activities, I would encourage you to write them down on your “growth plan” page, even if you write “none” next to it.   By doing so you will have a growth plan template that you can use every year as well as share with others.

Audio
On my iPhone I have about 200 recorded lectures and seminars on topics that I am interested in growing in – leadership, teamwork, personal development, etc.

I listen to those while I am driving and during down time throughout my day.

A quick word about driving and learning –  I learned this habit from different mentors I have talked to.  I try to be as productive as possible while driving.  Since most of us drive several hours per week, this is a great opportunity to use that time to grow.  I divide my driving time as follows:

  • Listen to recordings – I do that about 60% of the time when I am driving by myself.
  • Think – I choose one specific topic to think about.  I do this about 15% of the time.
  • Make phone calls – I do this about 10% of the time.
  • Relax – Sometimes when I am just tired or need a break, I may listen to music.  I do that about 10-15% of the time.

My goal this year is to listen to at least two one-hour recordings per week.

What audio lessons can you put on your phone, and how do you download them?

  • Seminars/Lectures – Different websites will let you download their lessons.  John Maxwell has a great site: Maximum Impact.  I subscribe and thoroughly enjoy the material posted.  Success magazine is another publication that has recorded interviews which I subscribe to.
  • Audio Books – I personally do not do this as much, however I know many who do.  The reason I don’t, is that I like to write in my books.  When I listen to audio books I cannot take notes and record my thoughts.

Seminars
There are many organizations that offer seminars on different areas of personal and professional growth.

I plan to go to three this year – two in the area of leadership and one about building better platforms.

Certifications
Depending upon your areas of interest, in 2013 you may want to get certifications that will increase your knowledge base and professional skill set.

I will pursue one certification this year in the area of medical coding that will hopefully help me in my medical practice.

Classes
There are two general options here:

  • In person – Traditional college or university classes may be something you would like to pursue.
  • On-line – While many universities offer on-line courses, I recently discovered a wonderful organization that offers college courses for free.  It is called Coursera.  My goal is to attend one course through this website this year.

In the world of internet, there are so many wonderful ways to obtain new knowledge.  The key is to use your time efficiently to find high yield sites and sources.

If you have any other recommendations, please feel free to post them below as a comment.

(continue reading – Part 1: Overview, Part 2: Book Reading, Part 3: Additional Reading)

Your Friend,
Wes Saade MD Signature

PS – If you believe this blog may benefit someone you know, please consider sharing!

Reading:  This week I am reading the book Anatomy of a Business Plan, by Linda Pinson.

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