No Image Available

googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display(‘div-gpt-ad-1705321608055-0’); });

Trainers: “The best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago. The second best time is now”.


What are we doing, to ensure that we flourish, personally, professionally and in our businesses, against a backdrop of political and economic tightening of belts – more than just a few notches for most of us it seems?

This morning, looking out from my desk into our garden it hasn’t taken long to be inspired for today’s theme. I see a garden that, despite its pathetic state a few years ago due to wilful neglect by the previous owners, is actually flourishing, due to many hours of spade work and hard graft, with no instant returns.  But now I see strong, sturdy plants and trees, glossy foliage and glorious blooms, brightening the day for anyone who cares to look, full of promise for the months to come.   I love the word ‘flourish’ even more than my other favourite word ‘achieve’.  It’s such a positive word, oozing with the promise of success.

So using this analogy, consider what you need to do, not just to survive, but to flourish in these testing times.  If you are a freelance trainer or training business owner, or of course a trainer in a organisation looking to market your services internally, which strategies have you in place to positively drive and aid your success?  How much are you playing, or being allowed to play, to your strengths?

I’d be really interested to hear your views on what we need to flourish. Positive emotions, a clear sense of purpose, value and achievement, engagement with what I am doing and with the people I am working with, and for, do it for me.  Oh, along with a healthy dose of resilience, tenacity and vitality!  Most of all, to flourish I need to be permitted constantly to play to my strengths and to be ME. I was recently asked by a great client if I had a ‘mini me’! But that wouldn’t really work, would it?

 I don’t know about you, but I also see in myself an insecurity – revealed by the need to always do better.  I am, if I am not careful, constantly on the lookout for further revelations: how to be an even better Mum, how to keep the house even more tidy, how to have more time to walk the four Jack Russells, etc etc, and that’s without all my business goals and aspirations!

It is so exhausting!  If I am not careful it will sap my energies and I will fail.  The learning point is this:  to flourish, we need like most things in life, to ensure a balance, an equilibrium.  I can see that in our garden.  It’s much harder though, isn’t it, to get it right for ourselves?

We work constantly with individuals, teams and  businesses to help them flourish and achieve. But development is not just about striving for more, addressing our weaknesses and acquiring new skills.  It is also about truly identifying, honing and building on our existing strengths, and a celebration of individuality.

This focus builds confidence, positive thoughts, a feel good factor, self-esteem and a respect for others too.  Its effect can be infectious, radiating through a team and business.  The release of positive energy, vibrancy and confidence can be exhilarating to experience. Conformity can only go so far in the corporate arena, so leaders, and trainers, beware.

So, building on strengths is a fantastic strategy for both the personal and our business’s self-improvement agenda.

To go back to our gardening analogy, consider this Chinese proverb:

“The best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago.  The second best time is now”.


Alison Miles-Jenkins
Founder & CEO
How To Market Training

No Image Available

Get the latest from TrainingZone.

Elevate your L&D expertise by subscribing to TrainingZone’s newsletter! Get curated insights, premium reports, and event updates from industry leaders.


Thank you!