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Personal and Professional Development for Business Students

Personal and Professional Development for Business Students

March 2015 | 392 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
This book clearly approaches the "21st century skills-issue" ... Hands-on, reflective, thorough: a definite must-have for students, professionals and HE institutions.' - Nieke Campagne, Careers/Policy Advisor, Leiden University, The Netherlands
Whether you are about to embark on your business degree programme, are already a business student or are a business graduate, this book helps you to develop yourself and your career in ways which will benefit you, your current and future employers and society. 

Focused on developing study and personal skills to enhance your employability, it provides insights and practical guidance on:

  • Developing a skill set and competencies that will be valued by employers, including team-working, critical thinking, networking, managing emotion and managing technological change
  • Self-profiling through career and life planning, and self-presentation through career communication, volunteering and internships
  • Becoming a global business practitioner, able to anticipate economic and cultural change, understand a diversity of world¬views and the idea of ‘global responsibility’
  • Becoming a responsible and ethical business practitioner, embodying virtues and values which are increasingly sought after by employers in line with consumer expectations.

'The first thing I really love about Paul Dowson’s hugely comprehensive book is its clarity; he takes complex themes and turns them into accessible learning outcomes. The other thing to love is its humanity – it is insightful and borne of a deep concern about how students transition from higher education to working life and citizenship.' - Jane Artess, Director of Research, Higher Education Careers Services Unit (HECSU), UK

Part I – The land of opportunity
Where you are now
An A to Z of Skills development
Graduate skills
Competences and ways of operating in the Twenty First Century
Going Global
Part II – Self awareness and development
Self-development and profiling
Integrity Matters: The integrated self and organization
Career and life planning
The nuts and bolts of career communication
Volunteering and internships
Part III – The Responsible Practitioner
Freud & Sons: A vocabulary for understanding psychosocial development
Responsible business practice
Responsible leadership and governance
Part IV – Humanity and Futures
Supporting Resources

This book is unique in the areas of personal development, employability and responsibility in business. First, it brings all these areas together in a coherent and rigorous fashion.  Second, it recognises what is needed for the Twenty-First Century business student in an environment, which demands both integrated thinking and integrity.  Third, it is focused in practice, recognising the different functional areas and outlining what responsibility looks like in each of these.  Fourth, it acts as a credible means of integrating the business curriculum by embedding personal development in each of the professional areas.
The book is for students, academics and practitioners, setting up a dialogue that will enable the most effective career development.

Simon Robinson
Professor of Applied and Professional Ethics, Leeds Beckett University, UK

The first thing I really love about Paul Dowson’s hugely comprehensive Personal and Professional Development for Business Students is its clarity; he takes complex themes and turns them into accessible learning outcomes for students and academics.  The other thing to love about this book is its humanity – it is  insightful and borne of a deep concern about how students transition from higher education to working life and citizenship.

Jane Artess
HECSU Director of Research

Paul Dowson’s Personal and Professional Development for Business Students clearly approaches the ‘21st century skills-issue’ and stresses the importance of personal development in relation to higher education in a fast changing globalizing employment market. Hands-on, reflective, thorough: this book is already a definite must-have both for HE institutions professionals and students.

Nieke Campagne,
Careers-/Policy advisor, Leiden University, The Netherlands

This is a thought-provoking invitation to students engaged in the management of their careers.  It steps way outside the tired banalities of what is called 'career guidance'.  And that means facing career-management issues ranging from the personal to the planetary.  The author invites students into a process of critical and self-critical engagement with the issues.  Some of these are moral and ethical.  The material points to the uses of narrative in making sense of the resulting complexity.  All of this moves into territory deeper and wider than what are recited as economic, psychological and political 'facts'.  The inclusion of episodes from the author's experience help to draw each student into her or his own experience not just for its functionality but also for its humanity.

Dr Bill Law FRSA
the career-learning café,

"Paul Dowson's encouraging book connects depth of thought and analysis with a clear perception and an empathic understanding of the needs which students and graduates have in their search to find their career and their position in life. The ways introduced and explored open up practical steps and perspectives during higher education which will be truly empowering. The text is making clear that there is common ground between the author and the reader in the latter’s struggle for a position of responsibility in business and human existence. I assume this fresh pragmatic and at the same time deep approach will inspire students' career development and debates on the subject among academics and professionals in the UK and on the Continent likewise."

Dr Gerhart Rott
University of Wuppertal, Germany / Representative formerly from FEDORA and now the EAIE at the European Lifelong Guidance Policy Network (ELGPN)

Personal and Professional Development for Business Students makes accessible to the student reader a wealth of scholarly riches, setting employability in a wider critical context, that of the development of the ethical and integrated self. Packed with fresh perspectives and through provoking concepts and practical ideas, the book grapples with the challenges of how to become an employable professional in the protean world of post modernity. While refusing simplistic conclusions and naive optimism, the book provides ample grounds for a belief in the lasting benefits that come from intellectual enlightenment and reflective learning.

Dave Stanbury
Director of Employability, University of Essex

In this wonderful book, Paul Dowson presents an excellent and accessible overview of theories on identity development. It offers a wealth of theoretical information and practical exercises, aiming at the integration in business of the personal, the moral and the organizational level. It will be a great help to business students in becoming competent, authentic and responsible professionals.

Prof Hetty Zock
University of Groningen

This book has all of the necessary topics that students in HE need to be aware of. This will help with Personal Development and Professional Growth.

Mr Hugh Clack
International Business and Culture, Kymenlaakso University of Applied Sciences
September 21, 2015