Recently, we at teamed up with Wyzant, the largest online marketplace for one-to-one instruction in the U.S., in order to better understand the connection between education and professional advancement. After surveying 900 currently employed professionals in America, we found out that training and development may be even more important for professional success than previously thought.

According to the survey, 48 percent of people have found themselves unable to get a promotion or otherwise progress in their career because they lacked some sort of skills training or certification. Furthermore, 67 percent of respondents said that opportunities for advancement were passing them by.

In other words: A lack of access to professional training and development opportunities can really stunt a person’s career growth.

The good news, though, is that people who do seek and make use of development opportunities feel they’ll be able to make more money at work:

- 25 percent of respondents said they could make up to $5,000 more per year if they pursued additional training or certifications;

- 29 percent said up to $10,000 per year;

- 21 percent said up to $15,000 per year;

- and 26 percent said more than $15,000 per year.

If a lack of training can hold one’s career back and access to training can move it forward, why don’t more people seek out training opportunities? The survey found these to be the top five deterrents:

  1. The cost (cited by 45 percent of respondents)
  2. Family obligations take priority (39 percent)
  3. The time required to study and complete the training/certification (38 percent)
  4. They are nervous about going back to school (22 percent)
  5. They have tried, but are really struggling with the subject matter (18 percent)

The big takeaway from all of this is to “never be complacent,” said Miles Jennings, CEO of “It’s easy to be upset by a perceived lack of stability in our careers due to constant changes in technology or the economy, but the lesson we all must all learn is to embrace change and continually push forward without regrets.”

Wyzant CEO and Cofounder Drew Geant agreed: “Today more than ever, employees require regular training to grow in their current fields – and in some cases, to remain employed at all.”

Check out the following infographic for more survey results:



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