Every course in the HR program offers the opportunity to learn new skills and/or brush the dust off seldom used ones. Everyone enters the program with completely unique experience; some straight from undergrad studies; some wait after working a few years; others wait decades to pursue a graduate degree; but it doesn’t matter. Regardless of where you are in life when you enter the program, you will leave it in a better place. And age should never be a deterrent! You’re going to turn 35, 45, 55 or whatever age you think is ‘too old’ anyway. The question is – do you want to turn 35, 45, 55 with or without your Master’s Degree?
Throughout the program I continually tweaked and improved my Time Management skills. As Benjamin Franklin said, “If you want something done, ask a busy person.” This is so true! The more we juggle the more skilled and efficient we become. When I began the program, I was a bit intimidated by the Course Schedules which list all of the assignments for the term. Now, as I conclude the program, I glance at the schedule and think, “I’ve got this!”
Thanks to the weekly assignments and class discussions, I have greatly improved my ability to create, and defend, Logical Arguments. I consider this a major benefit of the program. It’s not enough to have innovative ideas, and strong opinions, if they aren’t adequately expressed and supported. I enjoy the exchange of ideas from classmates, and always learn from their perspective and insights.
Writing discussions posts, and respectfully challenging someone else’s, definitely sharpens Writing Skills! The nature of online assignments and discussion emphasizes the importance of the written word; writing skills are essential. Words must be carefully chosen so as not to offend or mislead. With so much of today’s business conducted by email, I think it’s essential that writing skills be honed and virtual politeness examined.
Which brings me to the subject of Virtual Meetings. Some courses in the HR program require team projects among students who have never met. I believe every opportunity to take part in virtual meetings adds employment value. Employers need to know that their staff can be as expressive, impressive and productive in a virtual meeting as much as they are in an on-site board room. I, personally, would rather make as many inevitable gaffes in a classroom than on the job!
In this era of 24/7 news and an internet screaming and blinking at us to read opposing new stories, it is often difficult to discern which information is credible. The ability to Critically Review literary sources is an invaluable skill; one that I did not initially anticipate gaining from the HR program. Without credible sources to defend a proposal, argument, counter-argument, or even a request for a pay raise; personal credibility is lost and future proposals, etc., will be greeted with less trust and enthusiasm.
These are just a sampling of the skills I have gained, or enhanced, throughout the online HR program thus far; I have no doubt that more will follow!
“Happiness comes when we test our skills towards some meaningful purpose.” John Stossel