The Professional Development Advent Calendar

December 3, 2013

I’m sure you will have noticed that Christmas is now very much upon us. Advent calendars will have been started, the daily routine where children peel back a door to reveal a chocolate treat in the shape of a festive item.

I would like to challenge you to create your own Advent Calendar this year as something to help keep your focus on business and personal development during the festive distractions of the run up to the holidays.

Rather than get all Blue Peter on you and ask you to get out the cardboard and sticky back plastic, I’m going for a high tech version that uses an Outlook calendar or other similar diary software!

This idea will take a small amount of time investment but you will reap rewards if you do it. Here are the full instructions:

Write down a list of ALL the key skills you need to display as an effective leader or manager. You will need as many as the working days you will work between now and when you finish for Christmas. Here are some of mine to start you off, you can copy these or use your own:

Listening, Empathy, Trust, Engagement, Coaching, Education, Motivation, Example, Inspiration, Direction etcetera.

Set an outlook alarm for each working day at a set hour of each day, I would suggest 7am. In the message box for each day list the following message: “Today I will give the gift of ___________ to my team” adding the key word for that day in the space provided.

When you open your computer each morning you will automatically get the alarm reminding you of your daily challenge. When you see the message I want you to ask yourself “What WILL I do today to achieve my Advent Challenge?” Each night as you leave work ask yourself the same question again but substitute the word “WILL” for “DID”.

I got this idea from a friend who has her own daily positive mental attitude ‘mantra’ set as a recurring event every day in her diary! No surprise then that she is one of the most positive and successful people I know!

Her daily ‘mantra’ is the same every day but I wanted you to have a bit of variety! I remember as a child once getting an advent calendar where ALL the chocolates where exactly the same. I was very disappointed as I wanted each day to start with a surprise. I doubt you will remember the order of your challenges so that should keep you interested.

Have a great Advent.

Many thanks

Gavin Muge

Trainer & Consultant at MTD Training

http://www.management-training-development.com

(Image by Greychr)