Career development activities

Consider the 70-20-10 development principle when you look for activities to help you develop your career.

Challenging on-the-job experiences and assignments should make up about 70% of your focus. Forming development-related connections should make up about 20% of your focus. Formal training should make up about 10% of your focus.

Learn by doing, stretching yourself, trying different approaches, talking about the experience and improving through feedback.

You could:

  • role-play discussions or activities with a colleague or your supervisor to find ways to improve your approach and performance
  • experiment in ways to complete challenging work (record and reflect on your strategies and outcomes)
  • undertake additional or harder work as part of your role
  • shadow others in or outside your team
  • nominate yourself for projects in or outside your team
  • complete a secondment, interchange, or higher duties or relieving at level.

Visit Development opportunities (Talent Now) to nominate for opportunities.

Learn by interacting and networking with others, including colleagues, managers, subject matter experts (SME) and industry leaders.

You could seek out:

  • coaching for a set period from a SME to develop, apply and refine a particular skill or behaviour
  • mentoring from a critical friend, colleague, leader (someone with knowledge of the challenges of a particular role who can act as a 'sounding board')
  • coaching or mentoring opportunities (you provide that ‘sounding board’ and guidance for others)
  • learning circles, knowledge sharing groups, or community of practices (employees from different areas meeting regularly to discuss and find solutions to similar role challenges)
  • committees, professional associations, or industry and professional forums.

Learn by studying. This might be training mandated or encouraged by your agency or something individually focussed on your needs, your role, or your career. You may need to complete a certain amount of professional development each year to maintain your professional credentials. You may need to consider advances in technology. You may need to stay up to date with what’s happening in your field.

You could:

  • complete an online course
  • complete classroom training (as a one-off or as part of a qualification)
  • read professional journals, books, research papers, or articles
  • study for a certificate, diploma, or degree
  • attend a workshop, webinar, lecture, presentation, or conference
  • conduct a workshop or present at a conference.