Sunday, December 8, 2013

21st Century - Education & Continuous Learning

A CEO at a company I used to work for made it a point to attend- when possible- new hires orientation sessions and meet with them. Till today I will not forget the advice he gave during  this session and a Town Hall meeting:

1. We own our career at the Company
2. There is value for Associates not only in moving upward but also laterally and by joining cross functional Teams - His invitation was basically to be open minded to move to other functions, other locations during our career at the company to enrich ourselves as professionals and bring true value to the organization by transferring knowledge and best practice.

I have to admit - from my experience - not all companies are equipped to a have a career path or a development plan for an Analyst role. More often an Analyst role is considered a stepping stone to other roles or a dead end job where one gains the "Senior" title based on number of years performing the same job. As analysts, we are more challenged than most - if we choose a career in Business Intelligence & Analytics to create our own development plan to ensure we are not stagnate and in top of our game. Also, we have to make a choice if we are willing to weather through the tough journey while our companies adopt a robust Business Intelligence & Analytics platform or join companies that have already a Business Intelligence & Analytics department that has the Leadership support and recognition as a Pillar to execute Company's strategy.

Both ways, whether you are helping your company establish this capability or joining a company that went through the pain and has a well established function for Business Intelligence & Analytics, you should possess the necessary "Knowledge, Skills and Tools" to setup your "Workshop" as an Analyst and bring value to the organization that the machine can't and your Internal Customers can't without your support.

The following are sources available on the Internet for free or symbolic fees that I hope help you assess your capability, develop a learning plan, keep in touch with what is new and help you sharpen the saw if needed.

Have FUN..:-)

Personality Tests
  • Human Metrics - Personality Test based on Carl Jung's and Isabel Briggs Myers typological approach to personality.
  • Gallup Strengths Finder - Discover what makes you stand out
  • 16 Personalities - Personality Test based on Carl Jung's and Isabel Briggs Myers typological approach to personality.
  • How Millennial Are You - 14 item quiz that will tell you how" Millennial" you are,  on a scale from 0 to 100 by comparing your answers with those of respondents to a scientific nationwide survey.
Online Courses
  • Coursera - Free online courses from top 80+ universities and institutions including Stanford, Yale , Columbia, Ecole Polytechnique and World Bank 
  • Khan Academy - A free World-Class education for everyone anywhere
  • UDACITY - Learn.Think. Do. Advance your education and career through project-based online classes
  • IBM Analytics Zone - Training and Free Downloads from an industry leader in Business Analytics.
  • MIT CourseWare MIT on YouTube- Unlocking Potential, Empowering Minds. Free Lecture Notes, Exams and MIT Videos

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