I caught an article this morning that resonated on a few points as it relates to the startup project I’m working on… as stories and articles often do because I’m thinking from that perspective – a lot. It’s my context.
The article was about Warren Buffett and as those articles often are, it was about the “best ways to achieve success…”. He made three points, and all were good. But the summary was:
“Investing in yourself is the best thing you can do. Anything that improves your own talents.”
My focus was on his point #2: Invest in feeding your mind. In my context, this points towards understanding the tools you use every day, learning more about them, and using them in new ways. Yes, this likely (and hopefully) benefits your employer as well, but it also makes you a better contributor. It raises your skill level. It builds your set of experience that makes you better no matter who you’re working with or for.
Oftentimes, when thinking about skilling up tech skills, folks think about those periodic training opportunities – once a year conference attendance (like it was before COVID) if they’re lucky, or the x hours of training they’re allowed or even required to complete every year. While beneficial and a component to overall skill development, they’re just one facet.
Buffett’s #1 point was investing in health, which I whole heartedly (haha, if you know me…) believe in and agree with – even if I haven’t done the best here myself. Health, diet, weight loss, training – to be successful, all require ongoing, incremental, longer lasting, and intentional efforts. The same approach works for learning. You can learn a bunch in a short time frame like in a class or at a conference. You can also learn a little every day and build on it. That little learning every day can often be implemented while learning in your work environment – which helps those nuggets sink in even more. If you really want those learnings to reach their potential, you can capture (journal, post, etc.) what you’ve learned so you can share it with others. That’s the stuff I’m talking about.
Note: You know that workout app you use to track your workouts, with tips and exercises to use? Think along those lines – about a solution to assist with growing your tech skills for the tool(s) (platforms and services) you use, how you learn about them and implement them… that’s the service I’m proposing. More about that in other posts.
Buffett’s point #3 from the article is investing in doing what you love to do. Hopefully point #2 – feeding your mind – overlaps with loving what you do or puts you on that path at least. That’s a lot of what we’re seeing in the Power Platform world these days with business folks digging in with low-code tools only to find they enjoy building so much they shift job roles to do more Power Apps, Power Automate, and more. We saw similar moves with SharePoint lists back in the day, though I’d say the Power Platform is getting a lot more hype and excitement behind it.
The article covers more of his thoughts around learning. My understanding is that he shares many of these thoughts and strategies with his friend Bill Gates who’s also a famously well-read lifelong learner. There are a lot of ways to learn and an endless supply of things to learn.
Buffett’s strategy is “Go to bed a little smarter each day” which reminds me of one of my favorite YouTube channels named Smarter Every Day – more about fun science-y stuff but the point is the same.
What have you learned today??