David J. Kearney

November 28, 2015

Invest in Yourself…With Lynda

Filed under: Self Help,Technology — David J. Kearney @ 1:32 pm

At the end of every year I look for opportunities to invest in myself to enhance my professional skills and increase my potential. It is said that the best investment that you can make is in yourself and I have lived by that mantra for most of my professional life. Over the years I have taken courses, studied for and earned technical and non-technical certifications, and joined a public speaking and leadership organization to become more valuable to my employer. I believe that it is important to constantly learn, regardless of whether or not your employer fully assists, partially supports, or doesn’t contribute at all to your professional improvement. Although it certainly helps if your employer provides financial support, time off, or some other form of return on investment, it shouldn’t be the single motivating factor for improving yourself with updated or new skills.

As 2015 winds down, I was evaluating educational opportunities for 2016, including a return to a traditional college setting, on-line college courses, and possibly attending a technical school to enhance my technical chops. I have recently been very interested in accounting and marketing topics (which I really haven’t seen since my traditional college days many years ago), so I was considering taking local accounting and marketing workshops and classes as they became available. With the high expense of college and not being settled on pursuing a PhD (I have played with this idea for many, many years), another Master’s Degree, and not necessarily set on which technical skills I wanted to chase, I came across Lynda.com in my research.

Lynda.com is an award-winning provider of educational materials, including the Lynda.com library with over 4,050 online courses (more than 301,000 video tutorials): An online education company offering thousands of video courses in software, creative, and business skills.

During my research I found that Lynda.com could help me pursue most of my educational goals, until I decide to pursue that PhD or second M.S. degree, for a price that was affordable and a resource I could take advantage of in my schedule. After hemming and hawing over this decision for a couple of weeks and trying, but unable, to find someone that utilized Lynda.com to help me make a decision, I received a promotional E-Mail to subscribe for a year to Lynda.com for $287.00 (regularly $359.88). This price certainly helped in my decision making process. I signed up. Within a few days I had taken a couple of courses, including accounting and marketing related courses. Additionally, I took a course on utilizing Garage Band (I am a wanna-be songwriter, rock star, musician). All of the courses I took, so far, were high quality, very useful, and I could apply something I learned in every course to my day-to-day professional life. If I would have purchased books or took a course/series of classes on these topics I would have certainly exceeded the $287.00 I spent on the annual Lynda.com membership…and I am only 8 classes and 2 weeks into my membership. In my case, Lynda.com is less than a dollar a day and as long as I regularly attend courses, Lynda.com will certainly pay for itself with my enhanced and new skills. If you are considering enhancing your current skills or learning new ones, I would encourage you to look at Lynda.com…it’s affordable, available online and offline, and can be utilized on your schedule and on your device. Additionally, at least half of the sessions included downloadable “hand-outs” and one included testing during the course sections to reinforce the topics covered. One cool feature that I really like, but is outside of the educational courses, is that it can be linked to your LinkedIn account and will display your course completions on your profile in the Certifications area…a great way to keep track of and show your accomplishments.

If nothing else, be sure to constantly invest in yourself to help you and your employer. You now know someone that has taken advantage of Lynda.com, so don’t feel as skeptical as I was initially by not knowing the quality of sessions available or not knowing anyone that utilized Lynda.com.

Again…invest in yourself.

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