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4+1 Practices for Effective Lifelong IT Learning (Part 2)

Happy with how you go about learning, or wish you could learn more, learn more quickly, and even just do it? Today’s post continues what was begun in the previous post, namely a list of good practices to consider to improve how you go about learning throughout your IT career.

The previous post set up the issues, and made two broad suggestions:

  • Continuously learn more about learning and study, practice what you learn, and improve
  • Research and improve note-taking skills for each type of notes you take

Today’s post adds two more practices to the list, with a renewed request that you add your suggestions as well. Today, we’ll examine one type of short-term tactical goal setting with SMART goals, plus a much-neglected study activity: thinking about what you already studied.

3) Start Each Week w/ Achievable SMART Goals

Have you ever finished a week with this thought?

“I failed to make as much progress as I would have liked to make with what I’m learning right now.”

Many factors, both controllable and uncontrollable, affect whether we meet our goals. This next practice helps us achieve our short-term goals by setting and reviewing SMART learning goals weekly, every week.

WO-Cisco-2015-03-fig4 Read More »

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Value of Cisco Certifications: Making Money Vs. Study

Imagine that you see a Tweet today inviting you to apply for a part-time networking job, something you can do in addition to your normal job. You appear to be qualified for the job, and the work looks interesting as well. However, it requires enough of your time so that you would have to set aside your current professional development plans, including study for that next Cisco certification. The job lasts one year.

Would you take the job, setting aside your certification plans for a year? How much money would you need to make in that job before it would entice you to abandon your learning and certification plans for a year?

This post works through a couple of ideas (like the above) about how to quantify the value of a certification. Many people expect that more skills and certifications will give them more Read More »

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#CiscoChampion Radio S1|Ep19 Cisco Learning Network

#CiscoChampion Radio is a podcast series by Cisco Champions as technologists hosted by Amy Lewis (@CommsNinja). This week we’re talking about the Cisco Learning Network (CLN).

Listen to the Podcastcisco_champions BADGE_200x200

Learn about the Cisco Champions Program HERE.
See a list of all #CiscoChampion Radio podcasts HERE.

Cisco SMEs
Brett Lovins @brettlovins, Community Manager for the Cisco Learning Network (CLN)
Matt Saunders, @citylifematt, Community Manager for the Cisco Learning Network (CLN)

Cisco Champions
Colin Lynch @UCSguru, Principal Consultant
Brad Haynes @GK_bradhaynes, Client Solutions Specialist Read More »

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Getting started in IT

Recently, I researched wireless home internet packages at a local mall and being the IT guy that I am I asked some very technical questions. “Is this running over WiMax?”, “What frequency band is it operating in?”,”Where are your base stations located?”, “Is the signal quality line of sight dependent?”.

He was honest and after two questions admitted he wasn’t technical and referred me to a colleague who happened to be the tech support guy on site. He answered my questions, albeit not too satisfactorily, which prompted me to further ask if they had a setup I could use to experience the service. Once I had access to their workstation I did not even bother to open a webpage. I launched into a sequence of ping tests and tracer routes to all the popular public resources (4.2.2.2 anyone?) as well as to the internet facing VPN concentrator for my remote access. Read More »

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