When was the last time you heard about upskilling yourself? Probably today? Yesterday? This has become a hot topic since the last few years (though it’s relevance, and the advice itself, has been there since ages albeit with different wordings) and rightly so. The world is undergoing change at such a rapid pace that keeping one’s skillset to the accelerated pace has become a necessity. With growing competition for job positions and ironically, the never-ending need for newer skillset, keeping oneself abreast of the current development in their field while keeping acquainted with the up and coming trends is important.
The ubiquity of an internet connection combined with the progress of the e-learning scenario has made learning much easier than before. Despite the fact that enrolling in a course and going through the video is such a simple task for keeping self updated, yet why only a handful people are competently skilled and the majority are not? The reasons are:
Indiscipline: Enrolling in a course is not enough. People’s attitude of taking the same for granted and procrastinating the completion of the course at a later period (which never comes) owing to ease of accessibility to the videos is the main reason why majority of the people leave any course unfinished and end up remaining unskilled.
Watching Videos (and not doing anything): Simply going through any video is just like watching a random YouTube video. Consumption without engagement proves to be futile and hardly contributes to upskilling a person. Yet owing to the ease of going through the videos for the sake of completing it (and probably get a certificate for the same) is why majority of the people opt for this way of learning something new.
Certificate of Completion: The practice of recognising a learner for just completing a course without a “rigorous” assessment is one of the worst trend in the learning industry. It gives people a false sense of upskilling, contentment and accomplishment. And this pushes them in the direction of moving forward to another topic without religiously following up on the newly learned “completed” topic with sincere practice.
Lack of Practice: Without practicing newly learned content (post-training period) is the surest and easiest way of unlearning the new content or, the best scenario, having a theoretical grasp of the subject without any practical knowledge of the same. Yet this is the way learning nowadays are approached as people are “too busy” with their work to allocate any time for practice of a new skill, a skill set which can probably save their job in case of a crisis.
Change of attitude is required for people to really benefit the fruits of technology which can aid them massively in their journey of keeping one’s skillset relevant. This change of attitude can be brought about by:
Consistency and Urgency of Learning: Just like a real classroom training, the virtual training should be prioritised and accorded its own space and time to realise the full benefits of e-learning while warding off against vices like procrastination.
Engagement and Practice of the Topic: Getting involved hands-on with the newly learned topics and following it up with practice on a regular interval will ensure the skill is learned practically and remains fresh in the learner’s mind in the coming times.
And in addition to the above two practices, it is equally important to structure the learning in a systematic manner to ensure all the learning efforts are focused towards the right direction while developing a habit of learning on a regular basis. And this can be done in the following manner:
- Decide on the topics/subjects you want to learn within a time period.
- Choose one of the topics basis your requirement and ignore the others.
- Slot a convenient slot in your calendar everyday to learn this new topic in a consistent manner.
- Post the topic is over, continue towards slotting a time period after the learning period to practice the learned skill on a regular basis.
- Once you feel confident with the skillset, focus on the next one on your list and repeat the above four steps.
An important thing to keep in mind amidst the ocean of learning is to decide on what will be relevant to and contribute towards the progress of one’s goal and focus on that path only, ignoring the rest to avoid getting overwhelmed, slot and waste time on a fruitless direction.
At times, the entire learning process may seem tedious and never-ending. The former has to be tackled with a practiced discipline and the latter to be accepted as it is the nature of learning. Each individual is a life-long learner, right from learning to speak their first words till the time of their eternal sleep.
See you tomorrow!!!