It has been said that leading scientists grumble when it’s time to pause their research, write a paper about their most recent findings and attend a conference to share their work with their peers.
Still, doing so is well worth the effort, as it significantly advances the knowledge in their field. Plus, researchers return to their labs with new ideas for what they want to study next.
While I don’t think anyone grumbled about attending CUES’ Member Appreciation and Awards Event late last month, the gathering was a similar celebration of learning and a time of encouragement and inspiration for setting up 2022 talent development plans.
At the event, purposely held during National Learning and Development Month and on International Credit Union Day, CUES members were recognized for their leadership in talent development for their teams as well as their contributions to their communities and our industry. During the ”party,” we learned together about the pioneering professional experience of Sarah Thomas, the first female NFL official—who this year became the first woman to officiate in a Super Bowl. We also talked about planning what we can do next with our learning.
The celebration included the introduction of the 2021 CUES Outstanding Chief Executive, Distinguished Director, Exceptional Leader and Emerging Leader. It also showcased the presentation of our first-ever DEI Catalyst for Change Award. This new program recognizes a credit union that has shown sustained support for advancing diversity, equity and inclusion in its workplace and/or supported positive change within its community or our industry. You can read more about the winners in the November, December, January and February issues of our CU Management magazine.
What these winning credit unions and individual leaders have done with talent development is tremendous. Pausing to celebrate their accomplishments inspired all of us to make a plan to learn more in the year ahead.
Now, here’s a moment in which you can consider your own learning—both the party and the plan.
First, the party. How have you celebrated your team’s most significant learning accomplishments in recent times? How do you support your learners in sharing what they know? How do you thank them for their commitment to developing their skills and knowledge? Do you connect bonuses and/or promotions to learning? I’d love to know about your work in this area.
On the plan side, ask yourself: How are you planning for the next learning endeavor of each person working at your credit union? What are the skill gaps on your team that you want to fill? What about on your board? What educational experiences might help a so-so employee become a rising star? What will help your current rising star be ready to lead when the time comes?
As the only credit union industry association 100% dedicated to talent development, CUES is offering tools to help you plan for learning in 2022, including a template for an individual development plan. Be sure to pause and reflect on what you’ve been learning and to lay the groundwork—and the budget—for what you’ll learn next.