I’m a huge fan of continuing your education. When I graduated from college, I actually missed being in class because 1) I’m a nerd, 2) I loved the structure, and 3) The different learning environments were always fresh and exciting.
Whether you’re looking for your next job or you want to grow your team, there are plenty of options in continuing education to help you evolve personally and professionally.
You have a lot of options when it comes to continuing your education to complement or improve your current skill set. There’s a certification for just about everything these days: email marketing, social media ads, inbound marketing, hospitality, project management, design…the list goes on and on!
According to Glassdoor, some of the most common and impressive certifications include:
- Project Management (PMP)
- Human Resources Certifications (PHR, SPHR, SHRM)
One other thing to note: certifications are impressive, but don’t feel pressured to get certified. You can listen to a webinar or read an article to learn and apply something new to your life.
Where to find courses
Here are just a few websites where you can search for courses and certifications:
- LinkedIn Learning / Lynda (available with LinkedIn Premium OR you can use your library card)
- Google Skillshop
- HubSpot Academy
- Salesforce Trailhead Academy
Attending interactive workshops
The possibilities are endless when it comes to finding online certifications and general courses to expand your knowledge (I really love these!). You can find also find opportunities at:
The Orange County Library System alone hosts hundreds of online classes, from learning Quickbooks to CSS, retouching photos in Photoshop, microphone theory, design fundamentals, and more. Check your local library (or sign up for a library card!) for a class schedule.
Search the Meetup website, industry-related Slack communities, LinkedIn Groups, and more to find regular meetups in your industry, or in the area of expertise you want to learn more about. You’ll find virtual and socially distanced opportunities to make connections. Chatting with like-minded people and experts in the field can help connect you to the resources you need to learn.
Conferences and summits
Before you roll your eyes at the now-saturated world of virtual conferences…hear me out! Spend just one day per week – or even one day per month – picking out a virtual conference. Find an event that’s interactive, that you’re interested in, and that offers at least one really great class you could benefit from.
Conferences are a great way to meet people, meet potential employers, potential candidates, and to learn from the experts. Drop a link to your LinkedIn profile in the event chat at some point and connect with people you meet in workshops.
Attend events when they’re convenient for you. You can listen in the background of your work, or schedule a convenient time to attend before or after work.
Host your own event
If you can’t find what you’re looking for at an event, you can give hosting a go! This can give you public speaking practice if you’re up for opening and closing the event (or even leading a workshop!).
Hosting an event or creating your own community can also teach you organization skills, leadership, relationship building, and community building, especially if you learn best by doing.
I didn’t know much about freelancing when I started and I had trouble finding resources on it. A few years later, I wound up learning about the Freelancers Union, a national nonprofit organization that provides free resources for entrepreneurs and freelancers.
That organization gave me the knowledge and curiosity to start a local chapter in 2018 called SPARK Orlando to help our local community of entrepreneurs and freelancers. Now, I host monthly workshops through SPARK, and eventually I went on to co-found and co-host an international virtual conference for freelancers!
Being open to these opportunities can help guide you in your path to continuing your education and learning what works best for you.
Wondering if your candidates are qualified?
With so many options for continued education, it can be overwhelming to know which certifications are legitimate and what you should require for a position.
If you’re looking to grow your team with qualified candidates, we’re happy to guide you though it! We manage the candidate screening process and qualify their skillsets on the front end so you don’t have to. Contact us today to learn more about how we can assist in your hiring process.!