President launches new look CPD programme for 2019
In today’s world, it is more important than ever for chartered accountants to be lifelong learners and constantly review professional development requirements, says LSCA President Helen Brennan.
Even for those not given to introspection, the summer break from daily routine – whether it’s a fortnight abroad, a “staycation”, or a few days pottering around at home – provides an opportunity for reflection on work done over the last 12 months and what may lie ahead. Recharging our batteries is essential if we want to have the physical and mental stamina to take on the challenges of the next year.
On top of overall well-being though, we also need the right skills.
In a world of online information, search engines and increased automation, it’s easy to think that the requirement for continuing professional development is outdated. However, I believe that it is more important than ever for all chartered accountants to be lifelong learners because we need to:
- constantly re-evaluate the skills we need to bring to a rapidly changing workplace;
- cultivate the awareness that we’re still learning, every day, every moment; this awareness protects us from biased decision-making that stems from over-confidence; and
- consider regularly which skills we’re using at work, which skills we’d like to be using more and, therefore, which skills we need to develop. This opens us up to more challenging and rewarding opportunities.
I’ve found real benefits in making time to reflect on all my activity – my work in practice, volunteering at ICAEW and for LSCA, my charity trustee role, even my church music-making. I’ve considered the extent to which each is using my innate talents and cultivated skills, the opportunities they provide for developing new skills, and, inevitably, the aspects of those roles which aren’t using my skills, or fulfilling my need to develop more.
This reflection can then feed into short-, medium- and long-term planning for personal development, seeking new workplace and volunteering experiences, giving and receiving coaching and mentoring, and investing in the right online or in-person classroom learning.
In-person, structured learning plays a key part in professional development. It provides essential technical know-how as well as opportunities for networking in your local area. So, it remains a key part of the LSCA’s role to ensure that a comprehensive core CPD programme is available to all members.
For a number of years, the LSCA has outsourced the provision of our CPD programme to Mercia; but from 2019, we will be providing our own CPD in partnership with ICAEW. This will give us the agility to react to local demand and changing needs while ensuring we can deliver the quality and reliability you have come to expect.
You or your firm will soon receive a hard copy of the LSCA 2019 Essentials CPD brochure and/or emails with links to view the brochure and make bookings for yourself and your team. Inside, you’ll find high quality, topical content, designed by leading subject matter experts, including for the first time, seminars designed for accountants working in industry.
Alternatively, click on this link to see the full Essentials CPD programme: www.icaew.com/loncpd
You’ll also find details of a series of free CABA workshops to support you in taking a holistic approach to your own and your team’s personal development and well-being.
Please have that brochure to hand or on-screen when you’re considering what direction to take with your professional development in 2019, so that you can take advantage of the courses on offer.
Helen Brennan is President of the London Society of Chartered Accountants.
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