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Professional development while working: make the leap!

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Are you working and interested in going back to education? Numerous company employees step up to this challenge every year. Whether at 25, 30, or 40, the decision to continue professional development benefits anyone who wants to move up in his current company, progress within a new firm, or launch her own business. Several EDHEC graduates are here to share their experiences and answer questions: did their careers really advance after their return to education? How did they manage to smoothly balance their training and work?

Tick off the steps

The first stage is a question of motivation. This initial period of reflection is the ideal time to identify your expectations of the professional training course which you intend to undertake.

> Set a clear goal

First, start by establishing the main goal underlying your motivation to return to education. For example, this could be the acquisition of new skills, bolstering your experience, or obtaining a diploma.

My aim was to capitalise on my experience, bring our established management practices up to date, and broaden my knowledge in the managerial field. Jean-Baptiste, Audika Regional Manager

I achieved the initial goals I set myself — I obtained my Level 1 Degree, I strengthened my pre-existing skills, and I expanded on them in the area of management control. Mathieu, Founder of Py Image(s)

Your training may be provided by your employer, as in the case of Mathieu, Human Resources Manager in the Métropole Nice Côte d’Azur’s Department of Sanitation

EDHEC’s Management Development Programme is an opportunity offered by my employer, and my manager took it himself a few years ago.

> Choose the right course

Reprendre vos études implique de choisir une formation qualifiante et adaptée à votre projet. Pour prendre de nouvelles responsabilités et valider vos acquis de l’expérience

Returning to education involves choosing a course which results in your required outcomes and suits your needs. A general management training course can be an attractive option if you are looking to take on new responsibilities and validate your professional experience. Management (33%) and digital technologies (15%) are the training priorities for middle managers, according to an OpinionWay study for EDHEC Online.

EDHEC’s Manager Programme offers particularly wide-ranging skills training: from business strategy, finance, and legal risks to HR and digital technologies. This innovative course can open doors to numerous sectors and to various services within the same company.

I chose this course for its reputation and based on reviews from others in my company.
Séverine, Regional Sales Manager at Securitas, private security firm

I chose this course with the desire to make a change in my career. I needed a new perspective regarding entrepreneurial management. Laurie, Policy Officer for a life insurance company

To help you make the right choice, ask for advice from your colleagues or those close to you, one of the best ways to come to a solid decision. You can also attend webinars or information sessions in order to find answers to any remaining questions.

> Find out how to finance your course

Whatever your situation, you will be able to access professional training programmes: your company training plan, the Compte personnel de formation (CPF; a French continuing professional development programme), grants, and more.

It’s a long-term investment — even after the course, we are still learning thanks to the EDHEC ALUMNI network.
Jean-Baptiste, Audika Regional Manager

At EDHEC, our admissions staff will help you to draw up your funding plan, guiding you in assessing the support and grants for which you may be eligible and in obtaining loans or payment arrangements offered by EDHEC partners, already negotiated on your behalf.

Studying while balancing your professional and personal lives

> Are you able to manage yourself?

In order to embark on a professional development project, it is essential to consider the time you can devote to it. Remember that online training allows you to take a course alongside fulfilling your working responsibilities.

Modules for EDHEC’s 100% Online Manager Programme require 10–15 hours of work per week, to be organised outside your working hours. Evenings, weekends, and holidays present ideal windows of opportunity to work at your own pace, from your own home.

The e-learning format allowed me to create my own timetable and juggle my roles as mum, team leader, and student.
Laurie, Policy Officer for a life insurance company

E-learning is a format which allows you to easily plan your learning while maintaining a normal work-life balance. We can watch the classes whenever we like, giving us a certain freedom to manage ourselves.
Mathieu, Founder of Py Image(s)

> Plan your time efficiently

Before you begin your course, make sure that you have created an environment with ideal learning conditions.

The advantage of distance learning is that you can work at your own pace. Virtual classes do guide that pace but you can work in the evenings and at the weekend, bearing in mind that you have to give yourself time, delegate more, and reorganise both professionally and personally.
Séverine, Regional Sales Manager at Securitas, private security firm

> Stay on track to make your deadlines

Before starting their courses, 52% of learners worry about having to manage their training alone and having no-one else to rely on. However, EDHEC’s 100% Online Manager Programme demonstrates that it is possible to stay on course.

Deadlines set a certain pace to keep up with and prevent you from getting distracted.
Mathieu, Founder of Py Image(s)

For this reason, EDHEC’s teaching assistants, coaches, and teachers play an important role in supporting course participants:

  • follow-up on deadlines and submissions
  • re-motivating learners, identifying areas for improvement, setting objectives
  • discussion around whether the course is meeting learner expectations

Prepare for post-training steps

Returning to education while working is a weighty decision. An astonishing number of learners see significant life changes following their training:

If you have a vision of a taking a new position in your company, professional mobility, or starting a business, make use of it to review your post-training career plan.

Key points

You can return to education while working at 25, 30, or 40 — so long as you follow our three tips: set a clear goal, be meticulously organised, and thoroughly prepare every step of the way.

Find the EDHEC diploma courses that fit your profile.

Photo : kues1 for freepik.com

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