Skill up your outValue

Photo by Christina Morillo from Pexels

You have selected the skills that most interest you, so now it’s time to research their market demand. One way of doing this is to search job descriptions on the top Job Search websites:

The 10 Best Job Search Websites of 2022

Source: the balance careers

If your skills permit, try to focus on remote and WFH (work from home) jobs. This is research only, you don’t need to begin applying for jobs, you only want to assess the demand for the skills you’re going to market. Plan to invest at least an hour researching for each skill. Make a notation beside each skill with the number of relevant job postings you found. On the off chance that any of the job postings actually list a pay range, notate it as well.

Now you can order your list of marketed skills based on demand and potentially income rate. If any of your skills are not self-assessed as “Expert” then it’s time to focus on building them up. There are many resources you can turn to for online training:

The 7 Best Online Learning Platforms of 2022

Source: verywell family

The amount of time you’ll spend on this step could be anywhere from a few weeks to several months. Treat this as if you were in school. Pick the top three skills that you need to gain proficiency in and create a study plan. That plan will include blocking off time into a set schedule for improvement. What that looks like will depend on your current commitments and how quickly you want to be ready to go “on the market”.

You might set aside one hour a day. Maybe you can spend three hours a day. Just get your training plan on your schedule. I use a Google calendar for my time and appointment management. Whether you use a cloud calendar or one that you physically carry around with you, scheduling self-improvement helps your brain assign it importance.

Next set up a chart where you can log the hours you spent on each skill. This log tracks your time investment and is a visual reminder of your ongoing efforts. I use a simple spreadsheet for this.

SKILL2/12/22/32/4
Coding in python1313
image editing1010
playing guitar1010

You will need to set up a reassessment date for each skill. Maybe it’s a month from the start. Maybe it’s six months. How far out you set the date is up to your individual learning schedule and the amount of improvement you need to reach an Expert level. Assessment dates are not like final exams. They are just times you set aside to re-analyze and possibly re-rate your skill proficiency levels.

The ability to self-manage is critical. You must be able to find training, then schedule time educate and to practice all on your own. If you find this idea a little overwhelming, don’t be discouraged. The next post will give you some tools to help keep you on track.

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