If you are an MBA student or someone who has recently graduated and is working in the industry, you must be wondering how to learn any skill faster.
Due to the pandemic, the way the industry operates has changed dramatically. Most industries always find themselves lagging behind in terms of technological advancement. Businesses are playing catch-up with new tech. Thus, the importance of learning new skills like digital skills for MBA students can’t be emphasized more.
Many MBAs look for various online certification courses to gain these skills, but they end up wasting their time and gaining nothing in return.
It's true. We all have been there, binge-watching courses and gaining really nothing out of them. A week later you won’t even remember how to code, even if you spent the last four weeks binge-watching that Python course.
I will be discussing here why MBAs fail to learn new skills and what is wrong with their attitude while doing so. Also, I will be sharing the core idea about how to learn any skill faster and effectively during MBA.
But, first up, what is wrong with the way MBAs learn skills.
Placement-obsessed attitudes are a mistake
There are typically three types of MBAs or MBA students out there:
The Certificate Chasers -
- One of the most common types of students are those who take these online courses for the certificate they will receive after completing them. In addition to listing the certificate on their resume, they want to display it on their social media accounts. There’s a different kind of buzz that these people get when they unlock their certificates.
The Skill Hoppers -
This category of students is simply interested in learning new skills for their own satisfaction. It is their goal to make sure that they are apprised of the latest skills in the industry. Which also means that what skill they are learning is not always aligned to what they want to be. But it is about which skill is “cool” to learn and have on their resume.
The Placement Seekers -
Individuals in this group are quite certain that they will be taking these courses exclusively for placements. Once they know what their target companies are looking for, they begin taking the courses. That’s alright up till now. But the problem is that as soon as their goal is reached, they forget about the training.
Frankly, directly or indirectly, the motive of these students behind doing the online courses is placements. As soon as they reach their goal, they usually do not care about skills. When these graduates are required to demonstrate their skills, they have no idea what to do.
I am not saying this out of the blue. Having been on that side, I can remember not knowing how to write my first line of code the next day after binge-watching an entire Python course the night before.
It's not that I am against placements; money is essential, and placements should be your goal. If you focus solely on placements, you will not learn new skills in the true sense.
This mindset leads to very superficial goals. It motivates people for a limited period of time.
You must choose a goal that can motivate you constantly.
The Idea of GIG economy :
An industry-wide shift is occurring to a gig economy, where instead of full-time fixed positions, organizations are offering jobs to their employees for specific projects. The value of your skills is considered more valuable than any certificates you have.
Here’s the secret – Have monetary goals
In order to learn any skill faster and more effectively, you need a goal that is as strong as placements.
To learn new skills, I suggest that you need to have a monetary objective. You're not only learning a skill but also making money out of it, so you're constantly interested and involved in it.
Isn’t that realistic?
If you realize, this will leave you with the same feeling while learning the skill as what you feel when you are learning it to get that placement.
With this mindset of having monetary reasons for learning new skills, you can not only satisfy your monetary needs but also acquire the skills in a much more comprehensive way.
What should be your monetary goal? You might be wondering what the exact figure is.
It all depends on the aspirations and demands of the people. You shouldn't get caught up in the exact figures, rather select any realistic goal and just go for it.
What is the fastest way to learn new skills during MBA?
After setting your monetary goal, you need to follow the principle of LEARN >> DO >> TEACH
Learn >> Do >> Teach is the only requisite to learn any skill faster and with greater efficiency.
If you want to succeed in a B-school, you must think like a practitioner instead of a student.
In addition to learning new skills and acquiring knowledge, you must also apply them to projects or assignments. You could join an internship program or undertake a freelancing assignment that gives you monetary benefit. This will help you gain a deeper understanding of that topic and speed up you’re learning.
After you learn and apply the skill, you should start a blog where you can write about it. By doing this you will teach others how to do the skill, and you know that teaching is the best way to learn.
In my course, Five Steps Ahead, I teach you exactly this. That is, how to learn and practice various skills during your MBA, apply it on your blog (I help you start it) and become a well-paid practitioner.
If you do all this, you would be able to achieve the following:
Learning the new skill with utmost interest will be easier than ever before, as you will not only be learning it but putting it into practice somewhere that will give you financial compensation.
You would not only have the certificates but also the knowledge and skills in true sense.
Once you start blogging about your skills, you would start building your portfolio of work which would take you a long way.
But, where to learn from? Are all online courses good?
The various online courses present out there are either fully theory-based or fully application-based. There is a lack of balance between both.
Let's say you learn SEO through an online course. You complete the course and get the certificate. Now, you know everything about SEO, but later when you have to do SEO for a project, you are clueless. What's the point?
When you learn SEO by applying the principle of LEARN >> DO >> TEACH, not only will you be familiar with all the theory of SEO, you will also be able to use it because you have already used it in one of your assignments.
The main problem with these online courses for MBA students is that they are completely hands on, they will make you learn a particular skill, but they won’t tell the reason or purpose behind it.
You know how to write a particular code in python but do you even know whether you need to use that code or not?
As MBAs, you don’t just need to learn a skill but you also need to learn it with a strategic point of view.
By now, you should know how to learn any skill faster. What is the fastest way to learn skills during an MBA is no longer a query for you.
To sum up, you must attach a monetary goal to the new skill you are learning. Thereafter, you must effectively apply the principle of LEARN >> DO >> TEACH, where you learn the skill, apply it on an assignment, and then blog about it as well.
You will go a long way in learning any skill and building your brand if you follow this advice.