Posted on 15 September 2020
When it comes to upgrading yourself, there are many options. You may wish to take a break from work to pursue a diploma or degree, sign up for an internship or volunteer programme, or take a short course in a subject of choice.
For those pressed for time, unsure of what they wish to pursue, or seeking a leg-up in their existing job scope without a huge overhaul, the short course is a great option. Short courses, as their name implies, normally consist of lectures and short assessments spanning a weekend or a few days, with a certification of participation or graduation obtained at the end. (You can check out some short courses here.)
Thus, the short course serves as a good introduction to a field you may be interested to pursue, such as the Certificate in Practical Accounting, which provides a grounding in the basics of bookkeeping and account work. Otherwise, it can be used to augment an existing portfolio with industry-relevant skills, like how an early childhood educator can take up a Professional Certificate in Parenting: Parent-Child Relationship for an in-depth understanding of that field.
If you have freed up a few weekends to learn something new, we congratulate you! You have taken your first step on your journey of self-improvement.
However, even a short course is an investment of time and resources, so make sure you have done the following:
- Signed up
Yes, yes, this sounds so obvious and logical, but a surprising number of people miss this step. There are almost as many ways to sign up for a course as there are courses, so it can be easy to browse through what you like and forget that most vital step. In the midst of a hectic schedule, it’s possible to send an email to a likely-sounding address and forget all about it straight after.
Remember: you haven’t signed up until you have received a confirmation email or letter of some sort. If you sent in a registration form, make sure someone contacted you about it or some sort of receipt was given.
When in doubt, it never hurts to contact the course provider to ask about your status. Sign up pages can be tricky, so make sure to confirm your participation and whether you need to pay a deposit, or any other requirements.
- Prepared yourself adequately
Note down dates, locations (if applicable), and any preparatory work that needs to be done. For example, a GoogleAds course may require basic familiarity with the interface and accounts even before beginning. For an online course, make sure you have your workspace prepared and free of distractions, and that your speaker and mic are working.
Most short courses require a certain percentage of attendance, and some will have assessments for you to pass. You can also expect to undertake an exam or submit assignments in order to complete the course. Make yourself aware of the course requirements, and set aside time to achieve them – and gain that well-deserved certificate!
- Let your boss know
Be sure to let your work superior know, especially if you’ll need to leave work early or even take a day off to attend the course. Companies are more and more accepting of such arrangements, as they recognise the benefits to updated, upgraded employees who demonstrate an eagerness to learn.
For you as an individual employee, properly arrange your actions at work. Ensure that your tasks are completed if you will be away, or allocate a time for colleagues to catch up with you. Keep your colleagues up-to-date and get them to oversee your tasks temporarily if necessary.
A short course will help you increase your potential both as an employee and as an individual. Sign up and learn something new!
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