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05 March 2008

Ask MeCha: personal development courses My institute offers free day-long personal development courses such as "Conflict Management" and "Negotiating Skills." Have you ever been on a course like this? Was it useful? Part of me thinks that a class on negotiating skills would be really useful, and the other half thinks it would be a boring waste of my time.
I get sent on loads of courses like this and they vary from really interesting and useful to ones where you want to stab your eyes out with boredom.

But even if the course is great, I always find that within a very short space of time I've forgotten all about it if it's for a skill I don't often need to use.

The only useful one I went on recently was on Dealing With Extreme Behaviour, which has really helped me in my regular dealings with the Complainant from Hell and other assorted nutters. But that's only because I need to use the skills virtually every day I'm in the office.
posted by essexjan 05 March | 07:15
That is a good point about forgetting the skills if you don't use them regularly, essexjan. Obviously the value of the course would greatly depend on the instructor, but I'm not sure I have any way of determining how good he is in advance, as this is the first time these courses have been offered.
posted by grouse 05 March | 08:54
Eh, why not?

You only live once.

If it's useful, it's useful. If it's not, it's not.

Try one and see what you think.
posted by jason's_planet 05 March | 12:18
My office provides a certain amount of training for each employee, but I haven't signed up for any of these personal development courses because they all sound so boring. And all of the interesting-sounding ones don't apply to my job description, so I wouldn't be allowed to attend them.

Would I really rather spend all day listening to a boring lecture than spend all day joking at my desk with my coworkers?
posted by rhapsodie 05 March | 13:55
I did a 'conflict management' one once, and it was a complete waste of time. On the other hand, I won the stupid role-playing thing with the imaginary trucks - so that was good.

Just one data point.
posted by pompomtom 05 March | 18:00
I've done a few of these and, pretty much without exception, found them boring and containing nothing that I didn't know already.
posted by dg 06 March | 17:33
Beggin'. Put your lovin' hand out baybeh. (Franki Valli remixed) || Gaah, I've overdosed on politics.