If you Google ‘personal development’ or try and find some sort of definition, it will say something like this: it’s a lifelong process, it’s where people assess their skills, set goals, and try and be the best version of themselves. Basically, it builds on your identity by developing your talents and potential to try and reach that dream job of yours.

Our recent rugby opportunity is, to an extent, about rugby, but is also an amazing personal development programme, that aims to boost self-confidence, employability, and learn more about your own goals. It’s also worth over a grand, but YOU can get it for free.

Paul Morgan is the Head of Learning and Development at O2. Some people are visual learners, others like listening more when they’re learning. It’s Paul’s job to create a balance of resources so everyone at O2 can access learning.

What is personal development?

There are different sides to it, according to Paul.

“For me, learning and development is so many things, including relationships and building them and keeping them. As a society, we come from a traditional background and sometimes expect society to do it for us. We should be driving a learning culture to develop themselves and find new ways of doing things either at work or outside, to help them be the best version of themselves.”

“The first element of it is fitness and health, there’s loads of evidence saying that the fitter you are, the more your thought processes are able to deal with complex situations. That’s proven. The interesting element is an agile mind, with a greater skillset.”

“When you talk about your experiences, sometimes it’s hard to separate ‘experiences’ from ‘academic’ achievements, but people are always looking for what is going to separate them apart – this could be their experiences, attitudes and passions,” says Paul.

Our rugby opportunity does all these things – getting involved will, by nature, make you fitter and more competitive and you’ll be part of an experience that will set you apart from someone else.

So why is personal development and taking this rugby opportunity going to make you more employable? Paul explains.

#1 It’s good to have a talking point

Experiences, just like we bang on about how important work experience is, are sometimes more valuable than academic qualifications. “It’s a talking point and story,” says Paul. “One thing in interviews is the ability to tell a story and there’s no better way to give an example of how your experiences have developed yourself.”

The training will give you the ability to understand what true teamwork is about. Teamwork and working in complex environments is a bit like being a rugby field, getting support from people at different points in time, protect you or pass you a ball, it allows an element of teamwork and leadership.

#2 It increases your skillset

Learning and development gives you those social skills that you might not have had before. “No one teaches you how to greet someone in an interview or shake someones hand, but these can be memorable! People make their mind up about someone very quickly. If you’re fitter, you’re more confident, if you’ve been learning, you know what to do. It can bring out some of the shy people.”

“When you go for that job, you have a greater skillset and mindset than the person next to you.”

#3 Learning never stops

Learning and personal development is not something that stops when you get your first job. “I took my team off for a team building event with a paralympian who teaches you how to communicate and play goal ball for thevisually impaired,” Paul tells us. “Whatever age you are, teamwork and communication are vitally important.”

“Look at amount of people who are unemployed with degrees, your attitude and passion could take you past what is just on a CV, and it’s the experiences that give you that passion. Life is a continious learning journey, whether it’s things you have to do or things you like to do.”

#4 Take every opportunity

A young person should never turn down an opportunity, explains Paul. “That opportunity could open up other opportunities. You’ll meet people, gain experiences you didn’t think about and you’ll create a network, these are vital for many different reasons, and take every opportunity you’ve got to learn from others and keep you ahead of the competition.”

“You will take definitely something away from this opportunity, even if its just a nugget. Just be open minded!”

Think you want to learn something new? Apply to the rugby opportunity in London, Bath, Manchester or Loughborough. Click here.

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