Online learning – the entrepreneur’s secret weapon

12 February 2020 | Web Article Number: ME202017858

Education & Training
ICT In Industry
SMME Development & Support

IF you own your own business, staying ahead of the competition by keeping your skills sharp and current goes without saying. The only problem, says Jacqueline Raw, Owner and Founder of Ycagel, is that our time is often limited and wading through modules of irrelevant theory just isn’t high on our priority list.

This is why she regards online learning as every entrepreneur’s silver bullet. “It’s self-paced, self-driven and because it’s online, is accessible anytime and at any place. It’s so important to stay current and keep your skills relevant, and frankly, with online learning creating accessibility for everyone, we have no excuse not to be taking the time to invest in ourselves.”

She offers four key points to consider when selecting an online course or workshop:

1. Make sure it’s relevant
Often, we’re tricked into investing in an online course or workshop because of great sales ads and impressive titles – then once we’re engaging with the content, we’re disappointed. Ensuring that you understand what the course/workshop offers is up to you. Take the time to understand the modules/topics that will be covered and what the tangible skills are that you’ll be walking away with, then make the call.

2. Unless the recipe is proven, don’t buy it
There’s a saying that goes ‘Those who can’t do – teach’, and although I cannot disagree with this more, it does help me illustrate a vital point in selecting the right course. Make sure that the entrepreneur promoting the course has leveraged what they’re teaching you themselves and has proven results. A purely academic course or workshop is not going to change the game for you – look for courses by people who have the success to back their methods and then duplicate the strategies that worked for them in your own business.

3. Find real value

The reality is most of us face unique challenges in our businesses which can’t be addressed in a generic course. Seek out courses and workshops that allow you access to the course developers or mentors – this is becoming more and more the norm, so don’t feel like you’re asking for too much. This way, you’re able to get relevant insights and feedback on issues facing YOU in your business or career. Now that’s real value.

4. Do the work
You could find the perfect course developed by a highly successful entrepreneur that offers dedicated one-on-one coaching, but if you don’t do the work of learning and applying, you’re wasting time and money, and you’re just fooling yourself. Cultivating a student mentality and keeping the notebook and pen handy as you go is so crucial in ensuring you create success for yourself over time.

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