CoreDogs for upgrading skills

Suppose you already have a career as an accountant, teacher, plumber, engineer, whatever.

But maybe you aren’t satisfied. Maybe you’d like to have more fun in your job. Or you want to make more money.

Learning about the Web is one option.

But think carefully before you jump in. I suggest you think about this:

Can you add the Web to your existing skill set, rather than replacing what you already know?

You have some hard-won skills. Why throw them away? Even if you hate what you’re doing now, do you hate all of it? Or just part of it? Can you replace just the things you hate doing, and keep the rest?

Think about using the Web to do what you already do, but better.

You decide what “better” means. Maybe for you, “better” means not having to commute an hour each way to work. Or maybe it means choosing your clients.

Let’s look at some examples of what I mean.

Family law

Suppose you practice family law. If you had your choice, you’d tell about half of your clients to go elsewhere. Just take the cases you want. But you can’t afford to.

Maybe you could create a Web site that focused on things you really care about, like cases involving domestic violence. Would that get you more referrals? Would the site expand your geographical reach beyond your own town? Over time, you might shift your practice, so you can just do the things you want.

Electrician

Another example. Suppose you’re an electrician. You work for yourself, with one assistant.

There are customers you like working for. They listen to what you say, they pay on time, they’re polite.

But there are other customers. They’re pushy. They ignore your advice. You have to hound them to get paid. You know who I’m talking about.

Yeah, I do.

What if you could just work for the good customers? Say you used a Web site and email to keep in touch. You could keep track of what equipment your customers have; the right Web software makes that easy. You could type a note about what customers like: “The Jones like soft ambient light they can control.”

Every six months, you send an email to your good customers, asking if they need work done. Suppose something new comes out. Maybe Lutron releases a room dimmer system that auto-adjusts light levels. And has a remote control. In your email to the Jones family, you tell them about the new system.

Why do this? Because over time, you could get enough work from your good customers, so you don’t need to worry about anyone else.

Life would be more fun.

Working for Really Big Corp.

The examples above are for self-employed people. But the principles apply in other contexts as well.

Suppose you’re a sales rep for Really Big Corp. You like most of the job, but things like cold calling you could do without. Yuck.

But what if you had other skills? Perhaps you could convince your boss to let you do some electronic sales.

Or you’re an engineer, working on engine components. Maybe you could become the “knowledge management” human, helping all of the other engineers do their work better. You might be less vulnerable to outsourcing.

Say you’re a nurse. You have a special interest in palliative care. You could help nurses around your state, country, or even the world learn more about it. You could sell books, DVDs courses, and supplies through a Web site. If you made enough money, you could go from working full-time at the hospital, to working part-time. If that’s what you prefer.

Moving forward

To do these things, you don’t need the skill level of a Web professional. But, as I talk about elsewhere, it can really help to know the core of the most important tech.

That’s what CoreDogs does. Just the core.

Perhaps you have your heart set on changing careers completely. That’s OK. CoreDogs can help you learn the tech basics.

But think about another option. Look closely at your working life. What is the real problem? What do you really want?

Whatever you do is going to cost you a lot of time. Make a good choice.


Lessons

How to...


Dogs