Don't take a training class until
you read this
In the bid to acquire skills and knowledge in today’s
information age, many are turning to IT Training. For many individuals and
organizations, the need for training has never been greater. This hunger for IT
training is driven by the rapid rate of change in all spheres of life that are
now affected by information technology. Individuals and organizations are making
efforts to keep pace with the "latest" technical advancements.
IT Training is required both by users and professionals. To
remain relevant, you have to be equipped with knowledge and tools required by
the digital age. And training is a route followed by many. From time to time,
you will have to take important decisions regarding training. Training is often
your opportunity to proactively move your IT career forward.
How should you do your groundwork? An informed decision is
the key to getting training right. You can start by taking a look at ten things
you must know about IT Training.
Fill Skills and Knowledge Gaps
IT Training focuses on both the theory and practice of IT –the acquisition
of skills and knowledge. It is therefore an activity that seeks to fill skills
and knowledge gaps. What is lacking? Are you at zero level? Then the training
you need is one that will make you computer literate. If you are an IT
professional your need might be for IT certification. Before embarking on
training you must know what your training needs are. What gap needs to be
filled? Is the training need for an organization or an individual? What is your
desired career path and specialization? What do you need to know? Are you sure
training will close the gap? Set your training objectives carefully. The purpose
of your training should be well defined.
See it, Hear it, Do it
To acquire practical IT skills and knowledge, the best training approach is
that which uses the “See it, Hear it, Do it.” Concept, i.e. interactive and
participative. You see it been done. You listen to concepts and ideas and then
you do it yourself. “What you need to know how to do, you learn by doing.”
Training must combine the right blend of theory and practice.
Choose Your Training Based on Substance
The quality of training varies widely. It is critical that you choose your
training provider based on substance. A training center is assessed with respect
to quality of materials, competence of trainers, degree of instructor support,
training skills of trainers, corporate IT focus, counseling facilities, track
record, quality of facilities and other quality related issues. You should be
able to gain from the real world experience of the trainers.
Focus on Effective Learning
The focus of IT training should be on effective learning by students. Has
the gap been filled? What can the learner do now that he or she couldn’t do
previously? The training outcome is key. Are the skills and knowledge acquired
relevant and adequate? What is the value of training you have received? The
outcome should be such that you must not only learn, but you must also be able
to apply your learning for yourself.
Aquire Practical Skills
Certification and awards of diplomas are important training outcomes most
especially where there is a lot of emphasis on paper qualifications. But the
primary focus of IT training should be the acquisition of practical skills and
knowledge; the award of certificates or diplomas is secondary. Paper
certification will not get you anywhere in IT. Training should give you a form
of certification (diploma, certificate, etc), as well as practical skills and
knowledge. Training is not only about immersing yourself in knowledge, it’s also
about creating opportunities for yourself.
Training is Essential
If you want to build a career in IT and you have a degree or certification
without practical skills, training is essential for you. You need to acquire
these skills and knowledge to advance your IT career. Cramming for tests and
reading text materials alone are not enough to establish your IT career.
Consider the Cost
Cost is a major issue in IT training. To many it is a deciding factor.
But price should not be your sole determinant for choosing training or a
training institution. Always do a proper cost benefit analysis before
deciding if the cost will give you value. How do you value the investment?
Tie this to your training needs. Think not only of your immediate costs but
also of present and future opportunities. It is reckless to choose an
inferior training solution to save money. On the other hand high cost does
not indicate high quality.
Make the Effort to Learn
All the best instructors, world-class facilities cannot learn for you.
You must be prepared to make the effort to learn. Learning involves more
than routine attendance of lectures. Your primary role is to learn.
With a good training setup, there is no mystery to learning.
You simply have to be committed. Lack of commitment is a major problem. This
often arises due to poor planning and or insufficient motivation. Each day after
training, do you go over concepts you’ve been taught? Do you practice on your
own? Or is your learning reserved for the classroom only? You paid your course
fees in full two weeks before the course started, but where is your commitment
if you are frequently absent or late for training sessions? Make sure you are
dedicated to learning before you start.
It might seem funny or weird, but I’ve met students who just
want to pay training fees and collect certificates. They’re simply not ready to
go through the “stress” of training classes or exercises! Talk about a
misplacement of priorities! You either want to learn or you don’t want to.
Period! If you want to learn, get with the program and work on getting the most
out of your training program. Let your career ambitions keep you motivated
during times of self-doubt and stress. You must be ready to the effort to learn
and to apply what you have learned. If you don’t make the effort you are
burning, not just throwing away, good time and money. [+]
Courtesy : Jidaw Systems