In this post, you will find examples of personal development goals at work that are useful for individuals and organisations.


Whether you are looking at developing your personal development for your career or representing an organisation looking to improve personal development goals for employees, you’re in the right place. We will be looking at the importance of personal development, how to set goals for your personal development and examples of personal development at work.


Coming up in this post:

What is personal development?

Personal development, otherwise known as self-development or self-improvement is the act of making yourself better than you are right now. You can work on your personal development for many different areas of your life including your career, talents, consciousness, relationships, spirituality, physical body and so on. To be able to work on your personal development it requires you to have self- awareness, where you can reflect honestly with yourself on the areas of your life that need improvement.


Benefits of personal development to the self

Working on your personal development has many benefits to you as an individual. Let’s look at a few:

  1. Clarifies your life vision
  2. You’ll be able to make clear goals
  3. Increased motivation
  4. Sharpens existing Skills
  5. Boosts your confidence
  6. Pushes you out of your comfort zone
  7. Improves mental health by reducing stress and anxiety


Clarifies your life vision

Working on your personal development forces you to think about what is important to you, and clarifies what is worth pouring your energy into.

You’ll figure out your aspirations, abilities, values and beliefs. This will then allow you to discover a clear purpose of what you want to be doing in life.


You’ll be able to make clear goals

With a life vision for yourself making clear goals is much easier.

Whether it is achieving a personal goal linked to your talents or something you can apply to your career, having clear and well- informed goals will enable you to keep the end in sight working towards successes with purpose and confidence.


Increased Motivation

With goals linked to your values, beliefs and aspirations, you’ll find increased motivation to achieve it. Having a plan for your personal development will encourage you to be more proactive in achieving your tasks. With each small victory, you’ll be motivated to keep up the momentum.


Sharpens existing skills

Many people think that a personal development plan is just to improve your weaknesses, but it can also be used to develop your strengths.

Professional athletes will use personal development plans to hone in on their talents and set goals to improve their skills. It’s no different for you. If you nurture your strengths and talents, you go from being good at something to excelling in it.

With a conscious effort to develop yourself, you’re constantly learning and growing. This enables you to sharpen your skills. Your skills will develop dramatically, whether it’s learning from previous experiences and mistakes or even through deliberate study and practice.


Boosts your confidence

When continuously working on yourself and your skills you’ll see improvements and changes for the better. These successes will make you feel more confident in your abilities and have more trust in yourself. This increase in self- confidence will enable you to push your goals and develop even further.


Pushes you out of your comfort zone

A personal development plan will force you to think about areas that need improvement and in return pushing you out of your comfort zone. When we work outside of our comfort zone, that’s when we make very big changes to our lives.


Improves mental health by reducing stress and anxiety

Through having a clear plan of action you induce a sense of purposefulness. Many studies have shown that having a purpose in life dramatically reduces stress and anxiety.



What is professional development

Professional development is personal development for your career or professional life, which is developed either within the workplace or independently. This can include study for an academic degree, gaining qualifications, attending courses, conferences and events and much more.

In the workplace professional development is also known as a personal development plan (shortened to PDP). Managers will use a PDP to analyse and assess employee’s personal goals to ensure their objectives align with those of the company.

Managers and employees will meet every so often to see how their agreed-upon goals are being met and to set new goals based on the employee’s performance.


How working on your professional development can help your career

Considering a professional development plan is the ideal way to help improve your career.

You’ll be able to figure out what you want from your career and all the steps that you need to do to achieve it in a realistic time frame.


How having a personal development plan for employees is good for the organisation


Did you know that millennials have the highest turnover in any organisation? That’s why many trendy organisations are kitting out their offices with football tables, exercise balls and sushi lunches.

But there is a much more effective and cheaper way to manage millennials. A whopping 86% of millennials are loyal to an organisation if they can prosper, learn and grow through quality training and development. – That’s higher than Gen- Xers and Baby Boomers.

It goes to show that developing a PDP for your employees is something that needs to stick around for the future success of organisations.

So with that interesting fact out of the way, let’s look into more benefits of developing a personal plan for your employees to the organisation:

  1. Improves growth to the business
  2. Drives motivation and satisfaction
  3. Builds client and employee confidence
  4. Reduces staff turnover and improves unity

Improves growth to the business

Human resource researchers have found that having a PDP for each member of staff improves organisational productivity and motivation by up to 10 times. Frequent performance plan meetings is a critical aspect of implementing a personal development plan for employees. PDP’s develop the growth of the individual, multiply this across the whole of the business and watch the business grow.


Drives motivation and satisfaction

There are many aspects to working that motivate and satisfy people. It’s not always about financial reward, for many (like most millennials) having opportunities for career growth and learning is a huge attraction. That’s why personal development is an ideal way to motivate and satisfy staff. As they learn and reach goals within the workplace, they become empowered.


Builds client and employee confidence

As we talked about earlier, the more you can achieve the more your confidence builds. This is the same for PDP’s in a work setting. Giving your employees the opportunity to improve their confidence, will have huge benefits to how your business is perceived to customers. Think about situations where you have received fantastic customer service, was the staff member confident?


Reduces staff turnover and improves unity

As we’ve already highlighted, a PDP reduces staff turnover. A PDP not only gives you the chance to influence employee performance, but they also get the opportunity to voice their concerns and ideas back to the organisation. Don’t forget, employees have a unique insight into the requirements of their role. Together, you work on a solution that benefits both parties.

Without the opportunity to voice their concerns and find solutions, employees usually work in dissatisfaction until they find an opportunity to leave the organisation, and you’ll be none the wiser to the reason why.

Implementing changes from employee feedback demonstrates to them that they are important, improving loyalty and a sense of unity- we are in this together!


Setting personal development goals in the workplace

As you can see, implementing an employee development plan is worth the time and effort. Yes, getting started can be time-consuming, but this is where it is important to work with employees in a partnership.

To get you started let’s look at key aspects of personal development goal setting in the workplace:

  1. Employees need to take ownership of their goals, they need to be given the opportunity to decide what goals they want to achieve without the influence of a manager watching over them.
  2. Then managers can review with employees their goals, and bridge gaps between employee and company goals.
  3. Create SMART personal development goals. Specific, Measureable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-bound.
  4. Prioritise your goals in order of importance, so you and your employee can focus on two or three critical goals at a time.
  5. Arrange training or mentoring to achieve goals.
  6. Meet up regularly with your staff to review goal progression, and to set new goals if they are achieved.
  7. Reward and celebrate successful goal achievement with employees.


How to determine your personal development goals yourself


Here’s how to decide on what goals to set yourself:

  1. Think about what is important to you in life, what do you want the end goal to reflect? Does it align with your core values and beliefs?
  2. Be honest with yourself about your weaknesses. Only when you recognise these weaknesses you can set realistic goals to improve them and reach your final destination.
  3. Identify where you can make opportunities to develop your weaknesses.
  4. Set your action plan. Break these down into monthly, weekly and daily goals. By incorporating your tasks into everyday life you will improve little by little and be more likely to reach your goals.
  5. Nurture your strengths by continuing to practice them. This again can be broken down into monthly, weekly and daily goals too.
  6. Review your goal achievements continuously. Once a week, a month a quarter, keep on top of your goals and be proactive. Recording the outcomes will demonstrate to you how far you are developing and growing, giving you the confidence and motivation to continue and improve.
  7. Evaluate your achievements against your larger goals. Do they align? Did you stay on track? Are you closer to reaching your vision?


Examples of personal development goals at work

Setting personal development goals for yourself or your employees at work can be a tricky task.

For your career progression, you may be asking what do I need to improve on? Where do I want to be in the next few years? Do I need to develop the right skills and talents that are transferrable to other jobs? What can I develop in my current role for future progression?

For managers, you need to work with individuals and set goals that benefit not only the individual but the organisation too. The skills that your employees need to develop, need also to be beneficial to their current role.  For example, you don’t want to send your employees on training courses that aren’t applicable or useful to their role within the organisation, it will be a waste of corporate time and money.

So with that in mind, let’s look at some examples of personal development goals at work that you can use:

  1. Improve your communication:

Improving your communication can mean many things. Are you passive and you want to focus on getting your voice heard more? Or maybe are you too assertive and you need to listen to others more? Working on your communication can have many benefits to you as an individual. You will be understood better and you will understand others better.


  1. Improve your body language:

Your body language is a huge 55% of how you communicate. Like the above example, you may appear meek or even aggressive in how you hold your posture. Learning effectively how to communicate through your facial expressions and posture will have a massive impact on how you get perceived in conversation. Even certain postures can improve your productivity and performance.


  1. Improve specific skill sets for the job

Are you keeping up with technical, legal and best practice developments in your industry? Wherever you work you need a certain level of skills to complete the job. Can these be improved? Can you take on additional responsibility and learn new skills within your role? Are you wanting a new role altogether and need to work on a new skill set? Going on specific training to improve these skills may what is needed.


  1. Improving empathy (customer service roles)

Being able to comprehend and understand differing perspectives is a valuable skill. Especially if you work in customer service roles, or with people.


  1. Improve working in a team

Being able to work in a team is a highly effective skill to learn. You need to be able to create a rapport with others in a way that you can communicate clearly while listening and understanding their views and perspectives.


  1. Improve confidence and assertiveness

One of the more important personal goals to set yourself if you lack it is self-confidence. Studies have revealed that self-confidence, goal setting and perseverance are considered more important than a high IQ for success.


  1. To become more proactive

Proactive people don’t fall prey to the victim mentality of external conditions. They are the creators of their own lives and do not allow others to determine their path. They take responsibility for their actions. If you lack these traits, then learning to become more proactive for your personal and professional development.


  1. To be more organised

Being organised is more than just carrying around a pen and pad in your bag. An organised person can effectively prioritise tasks. They don’t procrastinate and they don’t let mundane, less important busy body jobs get in the way of their goals. If you find you never manage to get things done because you’re always busy, but you don’t have anything worthwhile to show for it then maybe you need to organise your time better.


  1. To manage stress more effectively

Too much stress is bad for you and your body. It can have disastrous effects on your mental and physical health. Being able to effectively manage stress is a skill. Fortunately a skill that can be learnt.


  1. To be more presentable and professional

Looking the part goes a very long way to not only how others perceive you, but to your self-confidence and self-worth too. It may come naturally to some, but for others a slight nudge in the right direction on how to look will benefit their lives in many ways.


  1. To manage conflict

No matter where you are in life you will come across conflict in one way or another. Developing a conflict resolution skill will enable you to resolve conflicts rationally and dispute tensions more quickly. This is a great skill for management position or customer service roles.


  1. To problem solve

Learning the skills to think quickly on your feet and have the confidence to follow through with your solution is an admiral quality. Did you know that being able to problem solve is one of the most sought-after qualities when recruiting.


  1. To teach or train others

Do you have a knack for being able to help others learn? Or do you understand your skill to such a high level it would benefit others greatly to share the same understanding as you? Being able to teach or train others is an impressive and wonderful skill.

These are just some examples of personal development goals at work. If you’re stuck for what to improve then looking at this list can help point you in the right direction.

Next, you need to plan of action to make your goals come to life.



How to track your goal progress

Having an easy method of tracking your goals is a huge part of achieving your goals. Otherwise, like the smoothie maker you bought two years ago, it will be forgotten about after the novelty wears off.


Goal Setting:

Break down your goals into monthly, weekly and daily tasks to make them your habits.

Let’s look at an example:

Life/ overall Goal: To become an accountant

Yearly Goal: Get my accountancy qualification.

Monthly Goal: (Month 1) Sign up to accountancy programme, complete all assignments on time.

Weekly Goal: (Week 1) Practice Balance sheets at home

Daily goal: Finish recommended extra reading for balance sheets



Use a journal to complete a set of daily tasks that reach a weekly goal. Then ensure your weekly goals are linked to your monthly goals, then your monthly goals need to be linked to your yearly goal, and so on until you work towards your overall goal.

It is easiest to work backwards from your big goals breaking it down into smaller and smaller tasks until you eventually reach your daily goals.

Prioritise your daily goals into top priority, priority and errands. This way you can ensure you don’t get carried away with the busy body non-important jobs.

As American entrepreneur, Jim Rohn said, “Either you run the day or the day runs you”



As part of the goal-setting process, ensure you are completing a review to check you are completing your goals.

Weekly Review:

This can be a small daily review with a tick list. Then review your goals again at the end of the week, a Sunday is usually a good day.

When reviewing your weekly goals, ask yourself did I complete all that I wanted to achieve this week? Then use this opportunity to set the following weeks goals and daily tasks. Anything you failed to complete can easily be carried over into the next week, and not forgotten about.

Monthly review:

Then Complete a monthly review. This time delve deeper into how you tracked your progress with your goals. Ask yourself the following:

Did I achieve my monthly goals?

What can I do to improve my performance?

What did I learn this month?

What distracted me?

What did not happen? Why?

What are the greatest insights I have learned this month?

How do I personally feel about my progress this month? Did I enjoy the journey?



It can be useful to set a reminder on your phone for a certain time of the day, week and month to complete your reviews. This way you are doing as much as you can to stick to your new habit and you won’t forget.



How the Reliving App helps with Personal Development Goals


Reliving are developing a goal-setting feature in their app as a way to create, review and track goals.

Goal Setting:

The Reliving goal-setting feature can categorise goals across all areas of your life to allow a well-balanced life plan. These areas include Fun and recreational goals, Career and business, Money, Family, Health, Spiritual, Personal Growth, and Relationships.

These goals can easily be broken down into monthly, weekly and daily tasks to create those all-important daily habits. Once each task is complete these tasks can be ticked off. (A satisfying moment, who doesn’t love ticking off their accomplishments?


Bucket List Feature:

They also have a new bucket list feature the development stage which categories goals into all levels of your life following the same categories, Fun and recreational goals, Career and business, Money, Family, Health, Spiritual, Personal Growth, and Relationships.


A new you

Congratulations on making a start to the new you, reading this post is just the beginning. The self- development process when begun, needs to be practised and internalised enough to become a life habit.

Once you achieve your current goals, you should move the posts and set new goals. This way you’ll never stagnate. You’ll be constantly improving and growing as a person- no matter what your age, or at what stage you are in your life.

The people who begin learning a new musical instrument in their middle age, or take on a new career after decades in the same industry unlock new opportunities and are more successful, because they didn’t let their age or experience stop them from unlocking their potential.

So don’t let time run away from you, begin your personal development goals now.