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TD Magazine

Finding Value in Service and Thought Leadership

Thursday, June 15, 2023

The talent development profession is filled with individuals who want to make a difference. "The key for me was to choose organizations with which I could have long-term relationships," explains Hadiya Nuriddin, recipient of this year's Talent Development Outstanding Professional Award. The award recognizes individuals who demonstrate exceptional TD expertise, leadership, and service.

Nuriddin says that to cultivate relationships with organizations, "I had to be consistent in when and how I showed up. ... It takes some self-awareness and trial and error to figure out what works for you." She found that volunteering for events with start and end dates worked for her because she could choose to participate annually depending on her schedule.


In addition to being CEO and chief learning strategist at Duets Learning, Nuriddin is the author of StoryTraining: Selecting and Shaping Stories That Connect, two TD at Work guides, and many articles. She often marries her yen for giving back with professional and personal development, saying she learns a great deal through her writing and teaching.

"Many people are hesitant to write because they believe they need the expertise first so that the content will just flow out of their heads onto the paper, but that's not necessarily the case," Nuriddin shares. You need a level of understanding to ask the right questions, but you also learn during the process, she notes.

The award, introduced in 2022, also acknowledges leadership. You don't make yourself a leader, Nuriddin says. "People make you one by following you." You can then work to make your contribution more valuable. "Note that I didn't say by 'giving more'—I don't think it's about just giving people information. It's about releasing the type of content that encourages people to reflect on their own experiences and make sense of their own journey."

About the Author

Patty Gaul is a senior writer/editor for the Association for Talent Development (ATD).

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