The beauty of the age we live in is that we have a multitude of opportunities at our fingertips each and every time we sit down at a computer. Gone are the days of sifting through encyclopedias or trying to figure out the Dewey Decimal system at the library in order to learn something new.
Instead, we have hundreds, if not thousands of resources we can turn to in order to further our education. And we’d be downright silly not to capitalize on that.
Why perpetual learning is imperative to a One Woman Shop
Constant learning is crucial as a One Woman Shop, where we rely heavily on ourselves and our own knowledge. It goes without saying that when we launch a side hustle or a full-time solo biz, we are putting ourselves on a path of perpetual learning. We’ll encounter necessary tasks that we simply don’t know how to do, and run into to-dos that we just don’t feel we’re good at. (I’m looking at you, accounting.)
While we’re all about asking for help, seeking out experts who can lighten your load, and surrounding yourself with communities that can answer questions at the drop of a dime, it is also vital that we keep learning.
The good news about being a perpetual student today is that it doesn’t have to come with an astronomical price tag, exorbitant school loans, or the stress of making it to class three times per week. Instead, we can take advantage of the wealth of online opportunities to choose what we want to learn, and how and when we want to learn it.
Here are four sites to help you do just that:
Skillshare is an online learning community with a mission to “reunite learning with education and make it accessible to every single person on this planet.” Classes are created to teach real-work skills, and all courses are project-based; that is, they’re designed around a student project that carries throughout the lessons. Each course is split into modules, making it easy to complete classes over a few days or weeks.
Skillshare has two ways to take part in their community. Monthly membership gives you access to the library of courses for $9.95 per month, or you can simply sign up and purchases classes on an individual basis. Paid classes range from $15-$45 each, but the library of free courses is delightfully extensive.
My favorite part of Skillshare? Instructors are incredibly engaged in the courses -- I regularly receive check-ins from Andrea Goulet Ford, content whiz behind BrandVox and leader of “Become a Better Blogger," and Gary Vaynerchuk’s team for his social media course. Skillshare courses give you access to great minds who truly care about your learning.
Skillcrush is focused on developing technical skills, so if you’ve been considering building a knowledge foundation in web design or development, this is the site for you.
Skillcrush offers its courses on an individual basis, but is better known for its packaged content in the form of “Career Blueprints.”
Courses and career tracks through Skillcrush come with a heftier price tag than that of Skillshare (a Career Blueprint course is $399), but promise a comprehensive education that is still undeniably affordable compared to a university’s tuition. Another notable differentiator: Skillcrush’s courses run on a calendar, but are designed to be completed with an hour of work per day.
CreativeLive’s focus is on “unleashing the creative potential of millions.” Classes are geared toward creative endeavors: photography, video, design, music, business, software, and more.
Naturally, the majority of courses put on by CreativeLive are, well, live. While most run on a calendar, the site also hosts classes that can be accessed on demand.
One Woman Shoppers will be especially interested in CreativeLive’s business courses, but I particularly enjoy dabbling in extracurricular interests like photography with CreativeLive. Courses are priced in a range from under $100 to over $250, with bundles available.
Quistic is the newest course provider on my radar. It was launched by influencer and serial entrepreneur Penelope Trunk, and takes a unique approach to creating course paths for students, basing it on your Myers-Briggs personality type and focusing largely on career advancement and lifestyle design.
The course catalog for Quistic is unique in that it’s varied among different aspects of life, teaching hard skills in courses like “Grow a Six-Figure Coaching Business” and focusing on softer skills in courses like “Make Your 20s Count.”
Most classes in the Quistic lineup are priced at $195, with lifetime access and a money-back guarantee.
Consistently sharpening skills and learning new ones expands our value, indirectly betters the way we do things we’re already good at, and, as 99u describes it, “bullet proofs” our career. And, when we’re in the thick of solopreneurship and our day-to-day activities, learning something new can simply be fun.
Tell me, One Woman Shoppers, where do you turn when it’s time to learn something new? I’d love to hear about sites or courses that have inspired or taught you along your solopreneur journey below.
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