These days, no matter what job you are in, there’s always something changing – with ongoing learning and the need to build on your expertise. But if you’re working in tech then this process has been strongly accelerated in recent years and this industry demands you to be on top of your game – you don’t want to be left behind so it’s vital keep up to date! Tired even thinking about it?
If it all sounds like too much hard work, luckily handy technology is never far from reach. Whether it’s your iPhone or laptop – there’s unlimited resources readily available to help you on your upskilling journey. And to point you in the right direction, we’ve pulled together the following list of good approaches to help you prioritise and organise time for learning…..
Set Aside a Specific Time Slot
It can be oh-so-easy to get caught up in your day to day workload and just never get around to trying out that new technique or reading up on that new trend you keep hearing about. But the solution is just as easy; you have to pro-actively make the time.
Schedule it into your day or even try to set aside a few specific hours one afternoon a week that you will dedicate to developing your tech skills. Whether that’s reading the latest articles, tinkering around with new software or getting into the nitty gritty of some coding you’ve been curious about, just give it a go and see what the learning is; as the marketing folks would say – just do it!
Read, Read and Read Some More
Often the simplest solutions can be the most effective. If you want to know all there is to know about a topic, then you need to be reading and absorbing all that you can about it. But let’s be realistic, technology moves so fast that by the time a white paper or book on the topic is published, it’s often already out of date. So no need to wait around for the definitive guide; you’re just stalling! Read your way around the issue and you’ll soon decipher what’s useful and what isn’t.
Luckily everything you could possibly need to read can be found online. But in an era of “fake news”, not all information sources are made equal. Find reputable publishers and information sources and make it a habit to check out what they are saying in general; and what they have to say about the topics you are interested. It’s a good idea to follow the top tech publications on social media and they’ll give you a daily dose of the latest innovations; with little need for much time input on your side.
Keep Tabs on Industry Leaders
One sure way to keep yourself in the know is to follow the work of those who are transforming the industry. Identify the real industry influencers who seem to always be ahead of the curve and follow their work.
This can be easily done by simply following them on twitter, subscribing to tech newsletters and blogs or even see if they host a podcast…almost everyone does these days! And if you haven’t used Ted Talks; try it before the week is out – here’s the most popular talks of all time.
Tap into Your Network
Everybody has different specialist areas of interest and skills. So, while you may be lacking in one area, one of your fellow tech friends could be a pro! As they say ‘two heads are better than one’ so invite your friends out for a coffee or an afterwork drink and start sharing ideas.
Talking through different techniques and applications can often be a great way to learn and even rethink what you thought you already knew!
Seek courses and credentials
If you really want to refresh your skills or learn an entirely new one, then try get involved in a training course. By enrolling in an educational course, you can get a much more well-rounded resource as you’ll gain access to lectures and tutors who can challenge you and help you grow. Plus, the cherry on top is not only do you walk away with new knowledge but also that all important qualification that can truly help you further your career!
While this may be the more expensive option, if you work for a big company, they’ll often cover the costs as long as it’s relevant to the work you do. So, reach out to your supervisors and see if there is any development and training resources available to you. But don’t be afraid to invest in yourself either; it’ll be worth it both financially and from a personal growth perspective. And the great thing these days is that for a lot of courses; you don’t need to leave your office or home; unless you want to!
If you are interested in upskilling in any of these training programmes, then please get in touch with us.