Learning At Work Week — how we make it a focus all year round

Communications consultant Rachel Carroll talks about the benefits of working for a comms agency that prioritises learning and development and offers key takeaways from a creative strategy webinar that brands can utilise in their own comms.

While Learning At Work Week (15th-21st May 2023) is a brilliant opportunity to talk about the importance of continual learning and development, at spottydog we know it’s so much more than that.

We make learning and development a focus all year round, reinforced by every pup who joins the pack automatically receiving a membership to the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) — the professional body for public relations practitioners in the UK — to keep our skills sharp and ensure we’re never short of new tricks.

What’s more, something we do regularly at spottydog — and now as a bigger team in Leopard Co — is ‘Lunch and learns’. This enables colleagues to learn new skills, collaborate with team members and enhance their professional development. Plus, learning from each other helps create a stronger company culture and ensures we can offer our clients a full-service integrated marketing communications solution, from strategic consultancy to business-as-usual tactical delivery.

As a Communications Consultant and Accredited PR Practitioner, my expertise lies in PR, content, influencers and social. But now we’ve joined forces with Big Cat, I am getting the opportunity to learn new skills such as how to maximise SEO for blogs and plan a creative strategy to reach results at speed.

Keep reading to discover my top takeaways from a recent lunch and learn with skilled strategist, Carrie Rotenberg.

Top takeaways from creative strategy planning webinar

Strategy is a way to win — not a plan. When thinking about ways to win, it’s important to consider the target (who are we aiming for) and the motivation behind why people are attracted to a product/service.

Gather research and data by using the 4 Cs to find the insight, also described as the ‘aha’ moment, that will mark the way forward:

  1. Culture — what cultural trends are top of mind for our target audience right now? What is happening in music, arts, politics, sport etc that our demographic care about?
  2. Consumer — what do our consumers currently think about the brand? Any likes/dislikes?
  3. Competition — what do our competitors currently say/advertise to our target audience? What brands have credibility with our audience that we could take learnings from or develop on?
  4. Company — what does the brand sell the most of amongst this target? What historically have they done to stay relevant in a fast, evolving market?

Once you’ve got the insight, use this to develop a strategy that delivers on the objectives.

Future Faces Chamber of Commerce membership

In addition to lunch and learns, a few members of the Leopard Co pack and I are members of Future Faces Chamber of Commerce — Greater Birmingham’s ever-growing network for young professionals and the leaders of tomorrow.

By being a member, we have the opportunity to meet, network and learn from some of the best in the business, enhancing our leadership and professional skills.

A recent event I attended was breakfast networking at Mcdonald’s with Doug Wright MBE.

Aside from learning how to make a Big Mac — a big career highlight if I do say so myself — I had a great morning networking with like-minded individuals and listened to Doug’s incredible story from a cleaner with one O-Level to CEO of 23 McDonald’s franchises across the West Midlands.

I can’t wait for all the exciting events and training opportunities coming up this year and it is all because spottydog (part of Leopard Co group) invests in my personal development all year round.

What does your company do to encourage continual learning and development in the workplace? Let us know on our social channels — we’d love to hear from you!

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