Learn on the job

One of the perks of going 1099 is that you can be a lot more self directed with your career.

One of the ways you can do that is to give yourself on the job training.

If there is a new skill you want to learn and that could help solve a client problem, spend some billable hours learning it.

For example, there was a tedious data cleaning process that my client had to do to perform some data analysis.

She delegated this to me.

I am naturally lazy so I decided to learn some VBA and other Excel techniques. I cut that process down to an hour or so.

Later for that same client I decided to learn how to use Tableau and build out a dashboard for that office.

Now all I do is Tableau development.

I got paid to learn new skills that helped me earn more down the line.

I've never been good about teaching myself new skills unless there was an inherent interest or a real world problem I could solve. Your client has real world problems, so use that and the paid time to learn new stuff.

If you need some ideas, you should learn how to

  • Do basic data cleaning and data analysis skills in Excel
  • Create sexy/modern/minimialist PowerPoint presentations
  • Write concise e-mails with clear call-to-actions

If you learn those three you could probably become an executive in any organization, and I'm only mildly exaggerating.


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