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Life at Toast Blog

Leveraging your Professional Development Stipend for Career Growth

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Megan W.

Director, Learning and People Development

 

At Toast, we want to cultivate  opportunities for career growth – both professionally and personally. We hope you’re able to do the best work of your career here. That’s why it’s important that we provide ways for you to develop new skills, hone existing ones, and identify opportunities for advancement

 

One way we aim to provide this support is through an annual professional development stipend. Every calendar year, Toast offers each full time employee a stipend to be spent on professional development. This stipend could cover a variety of learning opportunities, such as:

 

  • Books
  • Online courses
  • Conference fees and travel
  • Membership fees
  • Text books
  • Training programs
  • Certifications
  • Degrees
  • Exams

 

We asked a couple of fellow Toasters who have used their stipend in the past year to share their experience. Read below to gather ideas on how you might use yours.


 Faith N., Guest Technical Consultant

“I used my professional development stipend to get a SQL certification, which helped me get promoted to my current position as a Guest Technical Consultant. I learned how to use SQL to access data stored in databases and to use functions for performing complex database operations with ease.


On our team, we need to take extra steps to find customer information that is not accessible via Toast Web. Having this knowledge makes it easier to do so. I’m grateful to my manager, who supported and encouraged me to pursue this.”

 Sherry Z., Inside Sales Manager

“Being newer to Toast, I wanted to quickly make an impact on my immediate team and I knew the best way to do that was to continuously learn myself. I love how Toast supports personal learning and development and used my Professional Development stipend to pay for a subscription of Masterclass, Harvard Business Review, as well as the New York Times. As I would learn new principles in the field, for example, Daniel Pink’s concept of Social Proof, I would share that with both my management team as well as my direct reports. Same goes for great articles on HBR or NYTimes. 


I tell my team this all the time - it’s all about gaining one or two nuggets from each experience and incorporating that into your routine. So many great lessons from books, videos, articles, etc. really a treasure trove of knowledge out there and I’m confident these lessons will continue to impact my career trajectory at Toast.”

 Steffan A., Director of Product Design, Data Products

“I read a lot of non-fiction. As a director of product design for data products at Toast, continuously learning and deepening my understanding of how successful restaurants are run and what makes them thrive is extremely important.


There are several books that I’ve used the professional development stipend to purchase and I use what I’ve learned from them on an almost daily basis, not only to inform our team’s design work, but to have more informed conversations with our customers about restaurant performance and reporting.”

 

Hungry to learn more? Head over to Life at Toast on Instagram to learn more about the Toast Talent Experience!

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