Today was the first day of the ecdp Works Course. As the masterminds behind the programme, Dennis Preston and Rachel Vipond opened with several introductions before the CEO of ECDP, Mike Adams, spoke about how beneficial the course could be. We were then asked to introduce ourselves to the person next to us, answering six questions about who we were. When we were done, we then introduced that person to the rest of the room. Rachel, Dennis, and the various course mentors around the room also took part in all the activities. We then spoke about the schedule for the course and what was expected of us as participants, as well as what support and assistance the ecdp would offer to help us meet these expectations.
After a short break we then began to discuss our strengths and weaknesses, a topic several of us found surprisingly difficult. It became significantly easier when we were presented with a list and asked to tick the boxes next to each skill we thought we had. Those of us who could only manage one or two strengths were surprised by just how many boxes we ended up ticking. Each of us took turns standing up at the front of the room to explain, using examples, why we thought we had two of the skills we chose.
ecdp then provided sandwiches, fruit, and crisps to go with the already present tea and coffee, so we all stopped for lunch. When we resumed, Dennis showed us a PowerPoint presentation on Networking. He explained that networking is about carefully maintaining a long list of acquaintances and contacts, because the more people you know, the more likely they or someone they know are able to help you, or that you are able to help.
Though it was a long day, I felt like I got a lot of useful information out of this session. One of my weakest aspects when trying to promote myself is my lack of confidence in my skills, but ecdp helped me realise that I had a lot to offer a potential employer. I look forward to see what else we get up to on this course.