A few months ago I took the plunge and decided to invest in the CIPR Internal Communications Diploma with PR Academy. I’ve worked within Internal Comms for more than 10 years and I was deliberating whether or not this course would add anything to the knowledge I’ve gained through experience. I’d read all about the course, spoken to several people many times about what it entailed and spent many hours weighing up the pros/cons – especially as I was paying for the programme myself.
In the end I was swayed by the positive testimonials from everyone who had undertaken the course previously. I decided to join the online version as it was easier for me to manage with work and other commitments. I’m part-way through the programme and I’m really enjoying it. I was a bit worried about going back to academia, especially as it’s been 10 years since I completed my masters (and I still have some scars!) but so far it’s been fantastic. It’s been great to learn the theory behind some of the tactics we deploy as communicators as I think it really helps us strengthen our Trusted Advisor status in organisations that we support. It’s also useful to go back and truly understand the basics of internal communications to help you think more deeply about some core decisions we make in our role. I’ll keep you all updated as I progress but so far there are no regrets!
I’m a big believer in Continuing Professional Development and I think we need to take ownership of our own development rather than relying on others to make that decision for us. Ultimately you are in charge of your future and the goals you want to achieve so you need to choose about the direction you want to go. I’m all for speaking with your manager and getting feedback/support but don’t allow budget restrictions or other influences deter you from doing what you believe is right for you.
Of course, it doesn’t always have to cost lots of money; you can gain experience and knowledge by volunteering for committees, joining a professional body or just by networking with like-minded people. Twitter and Linkedin are great forums to connect and learn from others. I particularly enjoy reading blogs and articles that others share online – I’ve listed some of my favourites below:
Let me know if there are any more I should include on this list!
You can find out more about the IC Diploma and others by visiting: https://pracademy.co.uk/