Have a Go Month - Interview with Total People MD, Linda Dean

June is the Festival of Learning’s ‘Have a Go Month’ and we are taking the opportunity to celebrate adult learning across the LTE Group.

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  • Career Advice

June is the Festival of Learning’s ‘Have a Go Month’ and we are taking the opportunity to celebrate adult learning across the LTE Group.

The Festival of Learning is the biggest celebration of lifelong learning in England, and we’ve spoken to Linda Dean, Managing Director of Total People, about how adult learning has boosted her career progression.

  • In a few sentences, tell us about your career and education to date.

I left college after my A levels at 17. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do but I was keen not to do any more full-time learning!

I was in a management role by the time I was 21 and undertook my Level 3 and then Level 4 in Management. Inspired by learning and development, I undertook my assessor award and then the graduate CIPD programme with MOL. It focused on management development, employee development, running a training company and learning techniques. I am currently in the process of looking to start an Institute of Directors (IOD) programme.

My career has included one year working in the civil service, and then eight years in the travel sector (I was managing 50 people by the age of 21). I have worked for funding agencies in various guises (LSC/SFA) for eight years and worked for colleges, and I have 15 years experience with third sector training providers.

  • What appealed to you about adult learning?

The appeal is that it is role related – it gives you the potential to take what you have learned and make a difference the very next day, whether that means for the benefit of myself, my team or my organisation. 

Adult learning is also very flexible, it gives you the opportunity to network and learn from others, and to stretch your own knowledge.

  • What benefits have you experienced?

Adult learning has enabled me to secure roles I would not have been shortlisted for, particularly entry-level roles. It has also given me transferable knowledge which I have used in my day to day working.

  • What are/were your favourite elements of the course?

I think to be able to look at issues from a different perspective and to stretch and challenge myself.  Also, the chance to understand the context and theory to enable better decisions and a better experience (hopefully) for my colleagues.

  • What advice would you give to someone considering adult learning?

Go for it! Adult learning opens doors not just to new friends but also to new ideas and new careers.