Learn Some Gosh Dang Data, Scaredy Cat

Whether it is google sheets, excel, or Power BI, or inquiry based SQL, the importance of being proficient in their data analysis capabilities is critical to professional success. Sure, these platforms are going to take a bit more time to learn than other software tools, like presentation software or word document software. But it is so very worth it. With so much data being collected today, it only makes sense to learn how to analyze this data in a meaningful way. Data without thoughtful interpretation is just useless gibberish. Using the tools above and more to analyze data is critical to business success in today’s world. I promise, proficient use of these tools will become invaluable to you and your everyday role, and in pretty much any profession.

I hate having to have another fish for me. I love the act of learning to fish, because I know how amazing it feels the first time you have that new rod in hand, and you successfully get something on the hook. Of course, I am using learning to fish as a metaphor for learning new skills. When it comes to data analysis skills and using tools like the ones, I mention above it comes down to one big secret. Everyone who knows how to use these tools…(gets quiet) they all have had…PRACTICE!

That is it, that is the secret to learning these intimidating platforms, is practice. Sure, for some, learning how to use data analysis to their advantage is easier than it is for others, but I promise you, if you put in deliberate practice at learning these skills, they will quickly pay off. Luckily you are not in this alone. I actively saw that the folks that have these skills were and are the folks at work that were sought after every day by others. There are so many free and cheap ways to learn any of this stuff, and very good lessons on each.

Set aside deliberate learning time. Find a trusted coach in data analysis. I have two folks that I reach out to ALL THE TIME for help on how to help me learn these systems better, because I know it will lead to better analysis, and a stronger version of myself as a professional. Further, for me and others, data analysis skills are always being honed. I look up excel and SQL syntax on a daily, and there is TONS upon TONS of information out there to guide you on your journey. From blogs to videos to LinkedIn classes, learning new skills has never been easier to access than it is today. Today, right now, is the best day to learn something new. Go out and do it!

Author: Ted Henry Curtis

Support Delivery Manager. Passion for process improvement, standardization, and simplification.

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