I was invited this year to give a presentation at the CILIP in Wales 2012 conference on leadership. As leadership is one area I’m really keen to develop skills in I was delighted – this enabled me to both share my own progress so far (and hopefully help others plan their leadership journey during my workshop), and also to attend the conference to learn from those more experienced than myself.
My presentation focused on how you can develop leadership skills through professional engagement, particularly through supporting professional organisations. It’s no secret that I’m a keen advocate for professional organisations – my volunteering for them is a reciprocal relationship. I benefit greatly from getting involved in a wide variety of things I wouldn’t ordinarily be able to do within the scope of my day job (thus developing a broader skill set), and the organisations benefit from my input to committees/projects/task forces/working groups.
The main message I hoped to get across in my presentation is that anyone can develop leadership skills by just going a little bit outside of your comfort zone and trying new things – it’s all about learning more about yourself and about others. I was initially inspired by a blog post from Meredith Farkas and as I continued to try new things, my experiences widened and my skills developed which has benefited me enormously both within my working life and my life in general.
My presentation is embedded below (or follow the direct link to the online presentation):