GDE Continuing Professional Development
If you aren’t interested in CPD why is that?
Some driving instructors believe that because they have qualified as ADIs and are successful at staying on the DSA Register they do not need to develop themselves any further. Some driving instructors believe that if they go to conferences and attend talks they are developing themselves further because they are given a certificate at the end which states that they have undergone some Continued Professional Development (CPD) and, therefore, they believe they are doing enough. I wonder whether the real reason why these two groups of people do not challenge themselves more is because they are afraid. It is surprisingly easy to cover up a ‘fear of failure’ with defensive arguments that revolve around lack of time, resources, and need.
Fear is the biggest barrier to learning, reflection and self-development. Fear is the silent enemy because it festers and grows unnoticed constantly being fed and nurtured with excuses and rationalisations.
- ‘I don’t have time to go on a course.’
- ‘I have far too much work and would have to move too many people around to go on a course.’
- ‘Why do I need to do a course when my pass rate is good and all my pupils love me?’
- ‘These people that run courses are just in it to make money.’
- ‘I could never afford to pay out so much money.’
- ‘I’ve been on courses before and they’re all a waste of time.’
- ‘I worked really hard to become an ADI in the first place so why should I have to do anymore?’
- ’If the DSA wanted me to self-develop they would make CPD compulsory.’
How was school for you? Some people may well have happy memories of school because learning came easily enough to them and they were able to adapt to the way the subjects and lessons were taught to get the most out of them. For many people, however, school was incredibly difficult. My oldest son is now 21 and school was a nightmare for him. In fact, it was so tough that he was rarely there. He learned all the tricks to get himself unnoticed out of school. They had to register at the beginning of the school day and again at the end. Joe was there for these registrations … just not in between. My son never once produced a decent piece of work in class. He never had his work displayed around the room. He never had his work read out to the rest of the class. No matter how much effort he put into a piece of work, it never ended up being any good. When teachers praise they praise the ones that shine. They don’t recognise the efforts put in by the ones, who always underachieve. Joe switched off very quickly recognising that this was a destructive, negative environment and he was going to struggle to survive. The choices he made instead weren’t good choices for him but they allowed him to remove himself from the harm that school was doing to him.
I wonder how many of you reading this had similar experiences at school. So how do you feel when you hear the industry talking about CPD and telling you to go on courses because you need to self-develop or you will get left behind? Do you feel scared? Do you find yourself putting up barriers and making excuses that cover up the fact that you believe you would never be good enough to gain another qualification in addition to your ADI badge?
Many ADIs, who come on the BTEC Level 4 Professional Award in Coaching for Driver Development, feel the same way. Just the title is enough to make some of them feel they should have run a mile. The thought of doing assignments and writing things down on paper is very daunting. However, this is not a course about learning facts, figures and information. It is all about you. It is about understanding how your thoughts and feelings influence the way you behave and recognising, therefore, how other people’s thoughts and feelings influence the way they behave, not just when driving but in every aspect of their lives. The people, who are going through the BTEC level 4 qualification, are learning how to manage their fear and are recognising that, very often, their fear is nowhere near as big a barrier as they thought it was. In fact, they are surprised how easily they can break down the barrier and free themselves up to learn new things.
Some people will feel annoyed that I am writing this. If you are one of those people then you might need to challenge yourself and work out why you are feeling annoyed with me. Believe it or not, I am only talking about things that relate to the highest level of the GDE matrix: Goals for life and skills for living. Are you achieving your goals and do you have the skills to manage your life effectively? Do you reflect on a regular basis, considering what you need to do next in order to achieve your goals? When you have worked out what you need to do next, do you bother to go out and do it? Are you aware of what you are good at and what needs developing? If the answer to any of these questions is ‘No’ then you might want to consider completing a course like, for example, the BTEC Level 4 qualification in Coaching for Driver Development.