The Brutal Truth About Your Professional Development

Learn the secret meaning of common corporate words

Courtney Kirschbaum
Published in
8 min readFeb 7, 2022
Photo: Dmitry Ratushny/Unsplash

The Corporate Glossary series reveals the truth behind common corporate words and phrases so you don’t get duped. See past articles in this series here.

My first job out of college was a glorified envelope-stuffer for a 5,000-member professional association.

The annual main event was assigning several hundred members to 20+ committees while kid-gloving new board members into place. The coordination and communication were Royal wedding-worthy.

They hired a new executive assistant to make sure everything went off without a hitch. Picture Betty White with red hair — intelligent, competent, and experienced. She could've been a Golden Girl.

One enemy stood between her and success: her computer, which she treated like a ticking bomb.

To her, every application was a grenade whose pin could be pulled with an errant double-click.

Betty took to her computer like a demon to an exorcism.

The world pivoted from typewriters to computers, but Betty didn’t.

This week's Corporate Glossary term: Professional Development

Professional development refers to the continued training and education of an individual in regard to his or her career. The goal of professional development is to keep you up to date on current trends as well as help you develop new skills for the purpose of advancement in the field.

Some professions actually require professional development in order to renew certification or licensure and ensure employees are up to standard. However, you can typically pursue professional development on your own through programs offered by educational institutions, professional organizations, or even your own employer. Source: —

Here’s the reality. When it comes to professional development, maybe one in 1,000 employers will "…keep you up to date on current trends as well as help you develop new skills for the purpose of advancement in the field."



Courtney Kirschbaum
Writer for

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