Do you think that a Christmas gift for yourself is too expensive? Think again!
What’s that? The Christmas and New Years period is slow for your business? We hear you. That’s a common complaint, especially for service based businesses. Given that little snippet of knowledge, you’re probably thinking that giving yourself a Christmas gift is the last thing you’ll have the funds for.
What is this gift that we’re referring to? Actually, it’s more affordable than you think, and it doesn’t need all that fancy Christmas wrapping paper either.
Upskilling. Give yourself the gift of knowledge.
Your business may have slowed down as your customer base goes on holiday, but it doesn’t mean that you have to send your brain on holiday too. In fact, it’s probably the one time of the year where your business can afford to let you spend time doing non-income generating tasks.
Upskilling sounds like a really expensive thing to do in a financially quiet time of the year, but that’s not necessarily true. There are a number of free and low cost resources available that can help you in a range of areas within your business.
The key thing with any upskilling, is that you have a clear objective in mind. Take a moment to write down some of the key areas of your business that you’re keen to learn more about. Be brutally honest – do you properly understand your business financials? Do you know how to effectively analyse your chosen market and then put that data into a business plan? Does social media and all of its working parts sound like a foreign language to you?
You’re not alone! These are some common aspects of business that mystify business owners.
To save you time, and to kickstart your learning journey, we’ve done a bit of the work for you and found some great free resources you can tap into to get your upskilling started:
Let’s start with the basics and look at Libby first. Libby is an audio book and e-book reader. Most Libraries within New Zealand now offer a range of e-books and audio books via Libby. If you’ve got a holiday planned and you enjoy a bit of good reading, then Libby is for you! Download the app on your tablet and then follow the instructions to log in using your Library card. The sky is the limit with Libby and the books offered. Use the search term Small Business for example, and you’ll have access to heaps of great resources. If you’re not sure if Libby is supported by your Library, check out their website for more info.
Offered by Google, Primer is a free app that can be downloaded on your devices. Using short lessons in a slide based format, Primer has four main sections – Business & Operations, Brand & Identity, Career Development, and Marketing & Measurement. Each of these sections contains a range of topics that you can upskill in. By keeping lessons short and succinct, Primer is a great way to pick up new skills without being bogged down by irrelevant information. You can close the app in the middle of a lesson and then come back and pick up where you left off. It’s so simple!
3. LinkedIn Learning
Whilst Libby and Primer are somewhat easier platforms to upskill by, LinkedIn Learning should not be overlooked. Using video based lessons that are broken down into small topical bites, LinkedIn Learning offers a huge range of topics that you can search through. LinkedIn Learning utilises experts in various fields to give you relevant information that you can use straight away in your business. Want to learn about WordPress? LinkedIn Learning. Want to understand blogging for business? LinkedIn Learning. Social Media confusing for you? LinkedIn Learning! Most Libraries in New Zealand offer you free access to LinkedIn Learning, which is an absolute bonus. Visit your Library’s website to find out how you can access LinkedIn Learning, free.
4. Te Wānanga o Aotearoa
If you want to sink your teeth into something more substantial and have a Kaitiaki (navigator/tutor) help you on your journey, then the Mana Ora course offered by Te Wānanga o Aotearoa is a great place to start. Chances are you’ve been winging it as a business owner for a while, so you’ll find some great resources in Mana Ora. Free to New Zealand citizens and residents, learn how to analyse your market using SWOT analysis and other tools. Discover how simple it is to put together a business plan and to get your thoughts onto paper. As you work through Mana Ora, you will also learn a Te Ao Māori perspective to broaden your horizons even further. The free resources you receive in this course are without a doubt, top notch.
Upskilling can almost sound like a dirty word as a business owner. It feels expensive and it sounds like time you don’t have. Use the Christmas period to give yourself the gift of fresh knowledge for the new year, and gain a new perspective as you march into 2022.
We’re always available to help you amalgamate all of the new knowledge you will gain into your current business. All you need to do is get in touch to have a free chat to get the ball rolling!
Wishing you a very Merry Christmas, and an Upskilled New Year!