The 21st century has changed the traditional concept of career which was about the progression up in the hierarchical structure within an organization or profession. We still attached to this bureaucratic perception of career development but the business and industrial environment has changed and we need to adjust our career plans to a new reality.
Today, career development is about individual’s lifelong progression in learning and in work. Learning is not about getting a formal academic degree or professional certification which will last for another 40+ years of your working life – it is also about ongoing informal learning and professional development. And the career progression is not about the climbing up hierarchical steps, it is also about horizontal expanding skills and competencies or transition from one professional area to another. Learning is the key to progression in person’s professional life.
There many solutions available which effectively support career development in the 21st century. In this post, I’d like to talk about some opportunities which may look attractive and affordable to those of you who are considering career development or even changes.
The ed2go network consists of more than 2,100 top colleges, universities, and other educational and training organizations. It provides the highest quality online continuing education courses which cover different areas of professional expertise – from Accounting to Web Design.
The common features of the courses offered by ed2go:
- Each course has a dedicated instructor;
- Discussion forums are included in each course;
- Practical nature of the courses allows to develop skills which can be applied immediately;
- Courses are developed by well-known professionals.
A new session of each course starts monthly.
Most courses run for 6 weeks and consist of 12 lessons, representing 24 hours of instruction. Learners can ask questions and provide a feedback or receive advice at any time during the course. On successful completion of the course, learners will receive a certificate of completion.
Since it is impossible to talk about all courses, I will discuss online courses which support careers of the 21st century.
Blogging and Podcasting for Beginners
In this course, students learn to create, manage, and promote blogs and audio and video podcast using tools available on the computer—no paid software or equipment is needed.
- Mode of learning: Instructor-led course.
- Duration: 6 weeks
- Enrollment cost: $149
- Developing skills required for creating a professional-level blog or podcast;
- Possibilities of new career opportunities or new hobby;
New skillset can be efficiently used in personal, business, educational, or even political projects.
Creating WordPress Websites Series
This is a really exciting opportunity to learn how to apply world’s most popular web design tools. This series of 2 courses will take learners with zero experience and knowledge of web design to very advanced techniques.
- Mode of learning: Instructor-led.
- Duration: 48 instruction hours
- Enrollment cost: $261
Course 1. Creating WordPress Websites
Students learn how to create attractive and sophisticated blogs and websites using tools provided by WordPress – the world’s most popular website publisher. Learners get hands-on experience with this powerful tool.
By the end of this course, learners are able to use WordPress to create a blog or a personal, business, or organizational website.
Course 2. Intermediate WordPress Websites
This course has prerequisites – learners should have some blog or website publishing experience and good computer skills. For this reason, it is advisable to take Creating WordPress Websites course first.
In this course, students learn how to use an online administrative area to create and update the content. The course offers some tips how to customize website appearance using HTML and CSS. Learners will practice using plugins effectively.
- Learners use WordPress to create a professional-looking personal, business, or organizational website;
- Gained skills can be used to enhance career opportunities as a WordPress designer;
- Create a personal website to brand yourself and your business services online.
Many people want to develop their own business and make it a success story. But statistics show that majority of entrepreneurs fail within the first 18 months. It’s critically important to have skills and knowledge required to establish, manage and develop business. The Entrepreneurship Suite gives learners guidelines how to start and set the business up to succeed.
First, learners study the components of the Business plan, and develop personal business plan based on ideas they have. Next, learners develop marketing techniques to build sales, learn different financing options. Finally, learners master cost-effective strategies, strategic partnership, local marketing, SEO, social networking, niche marketing and other important techniques.
- Mode of learning: Instructor-led.
- Duration: 72 instruction hours
- Enrollment cost: $390
Course 1. Creating a Successful Business Plan
In this course, students develop a strategy for success and a detailed business plan. They learn about the role of customers in a new business venture. Learners are exposed to the marketing strategies and financial aspects of the business management.
Course 2. Start Your Own Small Business
Students learn how to choose the right business opportunity and develop suitable marketing techniques to build sales. In this course, they gain the understanding of traditional and non-traditional financing options. The course contains topics on employee management procedures and time management techniques.
Course 3. Small Business Marketing on a Shoestring
In this course, learners build the customized marketing plan and explore techniques how to attract target audiences. Students learn how to generate the referrals which are critical to company’s success.
- Learn what is needed for a successful start of the business;
- How to get right people and tools for success;
- Develop management and leadership skills ;
- Develop proper structures and policies in place;
- Create a personalized marketing plan designed in increase sales;
- Learn to generate more revenue with less money.
Way forward – Don’t stop learning new things
Learning and training are embedded in our professional life. For those of us who worked in IT sector, it is part of our professional life, we do learning, training and certifications regularly. Now, it is going to affect all other sectors since technology is reaching all sectors of business and manufacturing.
Trust me, it is hard to start. But eventually, it becomes kind of necessity. Enjoy your professional development, look for new opportunities, and don’t hesitate to get new skills – all this will work for your benefit.