- Rachel Van't Land
- November 18, 2015
Trying to keep up with all of the changes in the IT industry is a short road to a coffee overdose. You could spend hours every week chasing the latest info on a broad range of IT topics, and never know enough, or even know if you're going after the right information.
Online forums and in-person user groups are a good way to gauge which topics are gaining momentum in the industry, and are therefore worth your time and attention. IT is full of passionate, smart, and vocal people who are willing to share their expertise.
Here are a few steps for figuring out what you need to learn in order to stay ahead of the IT curve:
- Hang out and listen for awhile, and you'll quickly get a sense of which topics are worth your time, versus passing fads or some random guy's idea that doesn't jive with the industry as a whole.
- Choose some specific topics to dive into. After you have a good idea of emerging topics and some context for why they're important, you're in a much better position to drill down into specific training.
- Research your continuing education options. Most people can't ditch the day job to go back to school, but these days you hardly need to: local evening classes are cropping up everywhere, and online learning has become sophisticated enough that you can cover a lot of ground independently, at your own pace. And you don't necessarily need to enroll in a larger program—often it's just the matter of taking a workshop or a couple of courses to brush up on particular skills. High-quality courses are becoming increasingly accessible, in everything from programming languages to conceptual topics like big data or cloud integration.
Where to Start?
If you want to brush up your skills through online learning, check out CBT Nuggets. We're big fans. (Tip: You can dive in with a week-long binge thanks to their 7-day free trial.) We recently partnered with them and are excited about their online IT video training for system admins, DevOps, network engineers, developers, and more. You'll find hundreds of courses around skills like network security and Citrix virtualization, to name a few.
At the end of the day, the only way to keep abreast of what's happening in IT is to take charge of it yourself. By staying in conversation with other IT pros and getting smart about where to dive deep in your own training, you'll make it a whole lot easier.
If you want to grow your ExtraHop skills, here are a few good online resources:
Want to talk in person? Visit our Events page to see where we'll be in the coming months and find information about user groups in your area.
This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://www.extrahop.com/community/blog/2015/3-steps-to-keeping-up-in-it/