Masterclass: Investing in the Organization – and Yourself

January 21, 2020

Towards the end of 2019 when the H3 HR Advisors team met to kind of wrap up the year and to talk about some of the projects, opportunities, and challenges awaiting us in 2020, we also talked about how we could get better, smarter, better able to take care of our clients and ourselves in the new year. It was a really interesting and valuable set of discussions, and for our (mostly) remotely working group, making the time to meet in person was also especially important. While calls, texts, chats and even video calls are a part of just about every day for us, there isn’t anything that can completely (at least in my opinion) get the collaboration and creative ideas going than meeting in person from time to time.

During the meeting in late 2019, one of the things that we talked about was that even as a small, independent company that we still needed to think about ongoing development and education – and because their isn’t a formal, large organization and training and development group behind us, that we truly needed to “own” and more importantly, invest in our own development – both for the benefit of H3 HR, but also for us as individuals and professionals. This idea of individuals having to step up and proactively take charge of their own development is not unique to small companies like ours however, even people at some of the largest, best-resourced organizations in the world also can’t just sit back and wait for their organizations to “develop” them or prepare them necessarily for new jobs, new technologies, and new ways of working that are coming. In fact, the topic of employee development or “reskilling” is a complex, important one, and one that I plan to revisit here throughout 2020.

But back to our team meeting – I wanted to highlight and share some early learning from one of the activities the H3 HR team members are engaged with in 2020 – the online learning and education platform Masterclass. For those who might not be familiar, Masterclass is a set of resources, largely short to medium form videos in nature, where many of the world’s foremost and most successful leaders, experts, and high achievers in business, arts, management, leadership, cooking, public speaking and more, share their insights, experiences, and expertise. These “masterclasses” are easy to consume, are self-paced, and from my early experience with the platform, cut pretty quickly to the central ideas and concepts these “masters” wish to share. One of the many positive attributes of the Masterclass platform and collection of classes and topics is that you can essentially tailor them for your own needs and interests (for example, I felt “negotiation” was something I wanted to learn more about and improve upon), and also work with other team members if there was a topic the group wanted to explore and work on together (something like creativity or problem solving perhaps). But either as personal topics I wanted to pursue, or topics the team talked about wanting to address as a collective – so far my experience with Masterclass has been extremely positive. Getting the opportunity to hear directly from some of the world’s leading experts, in their own voices, expound upon what they have learned, their experiences, and their advice – it’s kind of unusual and I think, incredibly valuable.

But aside from a recommendation for Masterclass (Note: this is not a sponsored piece and we were not compensated in any way by Masterclass – we are paid members), I wanted to share this story because it does serve as a reminder, to me and hopefully to you as well, that we have to be proactive and intentional about our own learning and development. And we have to connect to our teams and close colleagues as well to gauge their ideas and thoughts about what we need to learn, to get better at, to improve upon, and to expand our ideas and thinking in order to be the best team and to be our best selves. H3 HR is a small company (today), but even as as a small company the need to focus on development and improvement can’t be ignored. I hope that you and your organizations will also make the time and commitment to invest in your own learning and development in 2020 as well.

And finally, because life isn’t all work, I did take some time to watch Aaron Franklin’s Masterclass on barbecue and grilling – highly recommended!

And finally, finally, on the latest HR Happy Hour Show, we talked about development and investing in our own personal development with Ben Brooks, Founder and CEO of Pilot. You can listen to the show here.

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