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Professional Stagnation

Professional Stagnation

by Sally Andrews

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The root of the word stagnation is the Latin word for “standing water”, stagnatum. Have you ever seen, or smelled, a stagnant body of water? The lack of flow or movement inhibits the growth of health, and reduces the quality of the water to a mere shadow of its former potential as a life-giving, bountiful source. Creatures no longer thrive in this water, and thus move on to better sources, while plant life that once bloomed ceases to derive essential nutrients from the water source and withers. Compare this to a body of water that is free flowing, and ever moving. It maintains its health and flourishes, continuing to be a source of life-giving energy for the life in it.


This is a poignant analogy when it comes to the topic of professional development. With the ever-dynamic world of business, exponentially fuelled by developing technology, analytics, mobile devices, and big data, it is important to reflect on, and consider, if your business can maintain its competitive edge, and remain attractive, profitable and relevant in the absence of investing in staff development. So while there is mounting pressure for businesses to be increasingly proactive in regards to implementing opportunities for staff development, the flip side of this is that there is certainly now a very real reason to invest in it.


HRCartel offers some advice as to how to ensure the professional development of your employees, and thus your business, does not stagnate:

  • Shift some of the focus away from your current needs, to better understand future market conditions
  • Review job-design of your critical roles, and remove inherent limitations for development
  • Identify and agree on career paths or skill development plans with your employees
  • Encourage employees to search for ‘off-the-job’ development opportunities
  • Embrace new technology like your life depends on it, because soon enough it will


What are your top tips for ensuring you keep a dynamic momentum to the professional development of yourself and your staff?