Professional Development & Personal Development Through Great Leadership, Ep #63

When you hear the phrase “change the world,” which seems to be prevalent these days, do you tend to think of grand things, things that move the needle in big ways? Perhaps the type of things that come to mind are finding a cure for cancer or establishing a context in which world peace can be attained. If that’s how you think of world change, you’re not alone.

But let me challenge you to think of it differently. You and I can change the world through smaller but no less significant actions, such as positively contributing to the development of the individuals around us. If you’re an organizational leader or top decision-maker, you have an especially fertile field in which to plant that type of seed and the harvest you might reap could be incredible over the course of your career.

This episode introduces the concept of the Mutually Meaningful Work Engagement — a method by which organizational leaders can work toward the positive development of the people within their organizations, and increase the profitability and success of the organization at the same time.

#ProfessionalDevelopment & #PersonalDevelopment through great #leadership. Find out how it’s possible on this episode of #TheDevelopmentExponent. #leaders Click To Tweet

Working as a paramedic opened my eyes to the need for Mutually Meaningful Work Engagements

I still remember my very first call as a paramedic. The call came in and I responded, driving to a rural location to find the victim’s son in the front yard raking leaves. It seemed odd, even out of place, but I had a job to do. I assessed the situation and went inside, making my way through piles of trash and filth to find the woman in need of assistance on the bathroom floor, lying in a pool of mixed liquids. It was a disturbing experience, but I was able to compose myself, focus on the task at hand, and stabilize the woman for transport to a local care facility.

At home that evening, I wondered, “What was the point?” The woman seemed to live in pitiful conditions and with people who appeared not to care about her well being at all. Was it even worth it to save her life if that’s all she had to look forward to? But upon hearing that she made a full recovery and was doing well, I experienced a feeling I’ll never forget. I had helped someone in a significant way, and it felt very good.

My journey over the years has led me to see that we all desire to feel that way, it’s part of why we work in the first place. We not only need to provide for ourselves we also want to contribute to things that make a difference for other people. Keep listening to hear how my experiences led me to envision and champion the concept I refer to as the Mutually Meaningful Work Engagement.

Professional development and personal development merge within MMEs

I believe that organizational leaders should be setting their sites higher than just professional development. Don’t get me wrong, professional development is great and organizations that intentionally contribute to the PD of their team members are doing a great thing. But even more powerful are organizations and leaders that take seriously the very real opportunity to help their organization’s leaders grow personally as they grow professionally — even if that means the person outgrows the organization in time.

A Mutually Meaningful Work Engagement is beneficial on both sides of the relationship exactly because of this broader perspective. The individual receives coaching that could rival that of any professional life coach, while at the same time receiving true on-the-job training and development on a professional level. When the two are integrated, amazing things happen for both the individual and the organization they serve. It only makes sense… when the team members feel supported and empowered, they contribute to the organization’s goals at a higher level.

#ProfessionalDevelopment and #PersonalDevelopment merge within mutually meanginful work engagements. What is that? Find out on this episode of #TheDevelopmentExponent. #leadership #leaders Click To Tweet

The scale and scope of a Mutually Meaningful Work Engagement is bigger

Stepping past the boundaries of professional development alone enables an organization to address the real needs and desires of those who have joined their teams. As a result, the organization has the opportunity to invest in team members that uniquely suit its needs while also experiencing the bottom-line benefits every organization must attain. Let’s quickly look at both sides of that equation…


  1. Grow your bottom line
  2. Professional development becomes an accountable endeavor
  3. Greater ability to keep your good people
  4. Benefit from and leverage the short-timers on your team


  1. Truly great professional development
  2. The opportunity for empowering and integrated personal development
  3. Feeling understood and appreciated
  4. Long term life skills that enrich their lives and the world

These are just some of the benefits to the proper implementation and consistent application of MMEs. I invite you to listen to this entire episode to gain a deeper understanding of how MMEs can happen in your organization. Stick around to the end to hear how my organization, Contracted Leadership, could assist your organization in developing and implementing your own unique MMEs.

The scale and scope of a Mutually Meaningful Work Engagement is bigger that typical #ProfessionalDevelopment. Find out more on this episode of #TheDevelopmentExponent. #leadership #leaders Click To Tweet

Outline of This Episode

  • [1:10] What does it take to REALLY change the world?
  • [2:01] The power of contributing to the positive formation and development one person
  • [8:32] Why should leaders strive to create mutually meaningful work engagements?
  • [11:35] How individuals in the organization benefit from mutually meaningful work engagements

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