Technical Training

This week I am attending a training class at work for advanced JavaScript and jQuery.  I have been looking forward to this class for weeks, and so far have not been dissapointed with the content or the instructor.  That said, there are some gotchas to training, particularly technical training, that I have learned over the 16 plus years I have been working professionally in the world of software development.

Firstly, finding the time to train is always difficult, particularly when your internal customers find out that you are in the building still and occasionally checking voicemail and email.  I often find that I feel like I am shirking my real duties while I am away at training.  This if complete and utter bunk of course, but it doesn’t how I feel.  So, I end up working on issues and projects before training, during lunch, and after training sometimes including in the evening from home.

Secondly, even if I am very interested in the topic being covered, I can actually start getting burned out by mid-week.  It is wonderful to learn new things, but when I do it for 8 plus hours a day for 5 days of lecture and labs, burn out definitely sets in.  Having a good instructor who can mix things up is certainly a big help, and thankfully I have just such an instructor this week.  Sometimes however, you have to take matters into your own hands.  If I feel I have a good handle on the current section or topic, I will often modify a lab or completely skip it altogether and instead do someting unique and funny with whatever I am learning.  For example, today I finished one of my labs ahead of most everyone else, so to stave off boredom, I decided to add a small easter egg to my code.

Overall, training can be a real blast, and in my industry is truly a must.  I have to remind myself that I am investing in myself so I can serve my customer better.  And, by keeping my eye on the prize I can push through to to the end of the class with flying colors.

What do you do to get through your training while still making sure you learn as much as you can?

 

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By Jacob Riis (1849-1914) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

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