In general, they say if you’re not learning, you’re not growing as an individual.
Every professional in this world has the same idea – climb the ladder, make more money, retire early. Sometimes, it seems hard to keep up with the fast paced standard set for us. Do you often find yourself thinking, “What skills do I need to get ahead?” Do you feel like your job could be replaced by a computer one day? Below are some tips on how you can stay ahead of the game in tech.
Take a Class, or Three
Just because you are a college graduate doesn’t mean you’re done learning. If you’re not learning, you’re not growing. Challenge yourself by taking 1 or 2 classes a year at a local university to better your personal growth. Years ago, developers were the only positions you that required coding experience. Now, coding skills are required by Data Analysts, Designers, IT workers, and Engineers. If you were a designer back then with coding skills, I’m sure you were in pretty high demand.
Find Your Yoda
Mentors not only have the experience you desire, but the knowledge and connections you need to succeed. They’re seasoned in their line of work and have the right connections to jumpstart yours. Sometimes we know we can be what we desire, but mentors act as the gas that powers the engine. They provide the inspiration to follow through with hopes and dreams and guide you along the bumps in the road.
Do you think Mark Zuckerberg Facebooked his way to the top without any help? No way! Steve Jobs took him under his wing and showed him the ins and outs of business & innovation. Another inspirational entrepreneur, Oprah Winfrey, was mentored by Author Maya Angelou before she blew up in the celebrity world.
Read Blogs, Don’t Just Skim Them
Blogs can be both detrimental and beneficial to your personal growth. In terms of bettering your professional self, Facebook, Tumblr, Stumble Upon, etc. probably aren’t your best blog choices. If you work in tech or design, try TechCrunch, The Verge, or Smashing Magazine. Blogs can be a good way to stay up-to-date on current trends and technologies to keep you one step ahead; not to mention they can also spark new ideas.
Ask Questions – Just Don’t Be Annoying
In my book, no question is stupid. If you don’t understand something, ask your peers for help until you understand. If you’re not clear on a task, don’t risk wasting your time executing it the wrong way.
Hop On the Treadmill
You don’t need to be a gym bunny, but getting to the gym 3-4 times a week can have a positive impact on your body and mind. Walking into work everyday with a positive outlook and a Go Get Em’ attitude, (thanks to the endorphins released by physical activity), could really improve your professional “jump” to the top.