Tips for Learning a New Job Skill

Looking to enhance your current career or get a head start on a new one? It’s always a good idea to have another professional skill under your belt. You might think, “I don’t have the luxury or the time or the resources”. I get it. With your already busy schedule, it can be hard to imagine adding a class or webinar to the mix. But as they say, where there’s a will, there’s a way. You just have to be a little creative and you’d be surprised at what you can achieve after a few small steps. Here are some tips to get the ball rolling:

Pick a skill that’s just outside of your comfort zone

There’s a reason why people often don’t achieve their New Year’s resolutions. Change is a hard and overwhelming process, and it doesn’t help when we set goals that are way out of our reach. That doesn’t mean that you should limit your vision. Still, you should be honest about what you can do, and set a goal that’s just outside the confines of your ability. For example, if you want to lose weight, don’t aim to fit pants that are 10 sizes smaller. Instead, set an incremental goal of 5 lbs first, then you can work from there. Similarly, you might want to learn something that’s related to your current skill set first. Are you an illustrator? Maybe you should learn about web design. If you’re an email marketer, consider learning about social media. If you’re a mathematician, why not start with learning more about statistics? The important thing is you start just outside your comfort zone, then you expand from there.

Enroll in a course that fits your schedule

When you think about learning a new skill, it can be easy to dismiss it as something you simply do not have time for.  But you’d be surprised to learn about the many short courses available to professionals these days, and some of them are even free. Just remember to do your research, plan your budget, and pick a course that is easy to fit in your schedule. For example, you can easily join a 3-day seminar on agricultural best practices during the weekend or take a short online course when you’re on holiday.  And if you’re feeling up for it, you can even take something that occurs over a span of few months, like a Phlebotomy Career Training course.

Get yourself a mentor

You can only get so far by yourself, especially if your schedule is jam-packed. It can be easy to give up and lose hope when you don’t have some sort of guidance. Having a mentor definitely makes things easier. You would have someone to look up to, and someone to emulate. Plus, he or she would just be a phone call or email away. And who knows, you might even learn more from this person than from a regular class. Mentors are especially useful when you’re jumping into a new field. You have this person who has spent a considerable amount of time in the industry and is probably already an expert. His or her support and advice can make or break your transition.

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