Getting a Masters Degree is hard. It’s not the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life because I’m a mom after all, but I did learn a lot while I was taking courses and not just about marketing. Goal planning is important for everything in life, for finances, career growth, home repairs, child rearing and even for vacations. Getting my Masters Degree definitely helped me focus my goals better. Here are a few tips, that I use both professionally and personally.
Curate Your Content
Choosing what is important to consume is a really important step. Contrary to popular belief, reading everything and anything on your subject isn’t a good use of your time and will provide you with some useless or even bad information. Make sure your sources are high quality from a real professional or backed source. For instance, I don’t read everything on FaceBook or Twitter, I scan titles and blurbs for professional titles and names before I waste my time reading on. Subscribe to blogs you know will push good content by their writers and other leaders in the industry.
Plan Your Reading
Planning how often you will read articles and industry information will help you set goals for your goals. Right now I read two industry articles a day, they don’t have to be long but as I said above, they have to be good quality. I also subscribe to podcasts and listen to one per week. I plan to listen to podcasts on Mondays because that’s my slow day and I can leisurely listen while doing another task. Slow incremental learning has proved much more worthy than trying to cram in an online webinar in one day.
Decide on an Archival System
I often come across articles I will want to reread or share, so they must be archived. There are so many programs to do this, but use one you already know how to navigate or find one that you can easily fall into using. I use Dropbox because it’s on my computer, phone, tablet, and I can share it with just about anyone with a point and a click. Evernote is another popular option. Don’t forget to create files, just as you would organize a filing cabinet, this keeps everything separated and easily accessible for reference.
Write About It
Write about what you learned, at a seminar, at a conference, during a great business experience, or interaction. Make this like a personal career journal. This is the way to get all that information to really sink in. In college I used to rewrite all my notes before a test, I’m pretty sure that’s why I had a 3.8 GPA. Even if you’re not the best writer, get out your laptop and start typing what you learned that day or keep a list of inspirational quotes and photos to look back on.
All of this is my Personal Knowledge Management system (I stole that wordage from my Fundamentals course). It really works, and it didn’t just work for my degree, it also works for my personal stuff, like parenting solutions and my personal finances. Look at it like like a scrapbook on steroids, way more techy and a better use of your time. 😉
Don’t waste time on all the noise out there, find the really valuable stuff and stick to it.