Jack of All Trades, Master of None (Journal)

ViShawn

Superstar
Supporter
Joined
Aug 26, 2015
Messages
10,210
Reputation
3,494
Daps
32,596
Good shyt. Writing it down means you turned your goal into something physical and tangible. I like this!
 

BlackCinema

Rookie
Joined
May 24, 2022
Messages
54
Reputation
20
Daps
99
This is actually inspirational. I think you can carve out more progression by getting up a little earlier though.
 

Macallik86

Superstar
Supporter
Joined
Dec 4, 2016
Messages
4,457
Reputation
870
Daps
13,845
This is my very first post, and I’m gonna use it to :salute: you. I’ve been on this personal development kick lately and this post inspires me. I like the structure you’ve laid out. My background was very structured like you have it but that was a lifetime ago. Rudderless is how I’ve felt. I met with a couple top producing sales people last week and they’ve both invested in business/sales coaches. Thinking about doing the same thing. I like to see things written out as well. I use excel for my budget and net worth tracking and will plan it out a decade from now. Might have to copy your daily routine.
Much appreciated and welcome to the Coli. Let me know if you decided to do anything and if so, what it looks like. Might steal some ideas from ya lol.
Good shyt. Writing it down means you turned your goal into something physical and tangible. I like this!
Thanks man! That's the first half of the battle. I realize the 2nd half is actually checking in on the goals on a regular basis. I have fallen behind in that aspect unfortunately
This is actually inspirational. I think you can carve out more progression by getting up a little earlier though.
That's definitely possible. I go to sleep around 11:30 or so, so it would require me going to sleep earlier which I'm not too interested in at the moment but we'll see....
 

Booker Carver

Rookie
Joined
May 24, 2022
Messages
11
Reputation
0
Daps
18
Much appreciated and welcome to the Coli. Let me know if you decided to do anything and if so, what it looks like. Might steal some ideas from ya lol.
I met with a potential coach last Friday. We’re meeting again this week to go over a game plan. My goal is to have a weekly schedule where I get the most out of my days. I’m trying to find a system for my team as well, so they know what they should be doing everyday to grow their biz.
 

Macallik86

Superstar
Supporter
Joined
Dec 4, 2016
Messages
4,457
Reputation
870
Daps
13,845
Welp. Found out my raise amount last week.... 8%
:dead:


After accounting for the 3% cost-of-living adjustment that everyone got, my raise was basically 5% lol. Damn near quit my job on the spot but I eventually got control of my emotions. I did let them know I was taking this entire week off within an hour of getting the number. I think I will be taking PTO more regularly moving forward to make sure I'm getting my money's worth lol.

I am either going to quit after summer hours end or automate as much as possible and grab a second job. Leaning towards the latter right now, but if they try to force me into the office after summer ends, I will likely dip if I'm not feeling it. Next week when I return to work, I will cordon off a few hours per week to work solely on automating recurring tasks. I have already created a document outlining my strategy which I will share later.
 

Macallik86

Superstar
Supporter
Joined
Dec 4, 2016
Messages
4,457
Reputation
870
Daps
13,845
Currently I've already reallocated 1 hour of every workday towards professional development which has been going great so far. I completed the SQL Course last week and I’m making light work of the VBA course as well.

Completed Course​


I’d put like 60% of the course as content I already knew or irrelevant to my day-to-day (User access rights, etc). This course was 13.5 hours long but I made light work of it by increasing the playback speed for videos with no new/relevant info. That 40% of content hit me right in the sweet spot tho.

I think that the biggest takeaways was that all of the ‘intimidating’ tasks that I passed off to other departments are lowkey basic AF. Indexes and Stored Procedures are really so simplistic that it’s hard to really convey how basic it is.

Functions are also something that made sense to me logically as well. I definitely helped that I learned functions over time when I tackled JavaScript a few years ago too.

I have another SQL course that goes more in-depth around Indexes/Stored Procedures/Functions but I’m assuming/hoping that there are complex layers that weren’t tackled in the course I finished. It really seems relatively straightforward.
 

Macallik86

Superstar
Supporter
Joined
Dec 4, 2016
Messages
4,457
Reputation
870
Daps
13,845
  1. Complete Data Analysis & Reporting Course - [7.5% completed] Strengthen my foundational Excel skillset before I start building outward.
    1. Completed
  2. Complete SQL Server Essentials Course - [40% completed] Strengthen my foundational SQL skillset before I build outward. I'm specifically interested in understanding of SQL Server beyond complex query-writing.
    1. Completed
  3. [New] Complete VBA Course - [70% Complete] Gain a more in-depth ability to automate within Excel/Microsoft Office in general. Got this course for free years ago and finally have a reason to take it.
  4. [New] Complete Advanced SQL Server Course - Work on automating queries and scheduling recurring jobs within SQL Server Management Studio. There will likely be overlap between this course and course #3, but my guess is that this course is more in-depth potentially.
  5. Complete Git Course - [27% completed] This course is so that I know WTF I'm doing when I start publicly documenting my code for prospective employers.
  6. Complete Mind Mapping Course - [40% Complete] Create structure to learn more efficiently. A more recreational slant to this course but it could improve my learning across the board
  7. Complete Python Course #1 - It would allows me to automate recurring tasks which will free up more time for studying/becoming over-employed
  8. Complete Python Course #2 - A more fundamental understanding of Python from an instructor I enjoy. Could be redundant though.
  9. Improve my data visualization skills - I have a book lying around that I can revisit.
  10. Improve my data analysis skills - Will cross this bridge when I get there.
Currently I spend most of my time on the VBA Course and occasionally I dabble w/ the Mind Mapping Course. At this rate I will finish the VBA course as well by the EOW.
 

Rawtid

Veteran
Supporter
Joined
Jun 23, 2012
Messages
42,525
Reputation
14,339
Daps
116,223
Welp. Found out my raise amount last week.... 8%
:dead:


After accounting for the 3% cost-of-living adjustment that everyone got, my raise was basically 5% lol. Damn near quit my job on the spot but I eventually got control of my emotions. I did let them know I was taking this entire week off within an hour of getting the number. I think I will be taking PTO more regularly moving forward to make sure I'm getting my money's worth lol.

I am either going to quit after summer hours end or automate as much as possible and grab a second job. Leaning towards the latter right now, but if they try to force me into the office after summer ends, I will likely dip if I'm not feeling it. Next week when I return to work, I will cordon off a few hours per week to work solely on automating recurring tasks. I have already created a document outlining my strategy which I will share later.
Are you actively applying to roles as well or just focusing on professional development? I think every time you complete a course, add a summary of the work to your resume and apply for something you feel is a good fit. Not tons of positions, just a couple...just putting some feelers out.
 

Macallik86

Superstar
Supporter
Joined
Dec 4, 2016
Messages
4,457
Reputation
870
Daps
13,845
Are you actively applying to roles as well or just focusing on professional development? I think every time you complete a course, add a summary of the work to your resume and apply for something you feel is a good fit. Not tons of positions, just a couple...just putting some feelers out.
I'm not actively applying at all. I'm not in a rush to get a second job until I know I have more time for it. My overarching plan is similar though:
  1. Learn automation skills
  2. Apply automation skills to my current job to streamline tasks
  3. Then add applied skills to my resume
  4. Use time saved through automation to apply to new jobs
I like the compensation part and the "fukk the traditional ideals of employment" aspect of working two jobs at once. On the other hand, after working for a decade straight, a work sabbatical is very appealing. If I take on a second job, I don't see any off-ramps towards that on the horizon.

The tricky part is that I'm balancing my desire to temporarily leave the 9-5 lifestyle with the knowledge that the job market is tightening and jobs will be harder to come by. I know that my growing indifference towards my current job is conducive to grabbing a 2nd one, but alternatively, there's no actual monetary goal that working two jobs provides... At the root of it is really a raw pursuit of money for the sake of having more money. Back in Feb 2020, I had the means (and intent since I put in my notice) to quit and take an extended work sabbatical back prior to the pandemic hitting. I've since doubled my net worth, but as a minimalist for the most part, my life is basically the same. If I work two jobs and double my net worth again in two years, then what?

With that said, I'd say here's how I rank my options:
  1. Get a second job to complement my current job. (I begrudgingly view this like splitting pocket Aces in Blackjack... might as well play the odds)
  2. Take 3-6 months off and then:
    1. Start from scratch and find two jobs that each pay approximately what I'm making now
    2. Get one more-demanding job that pays ~30% more than my current role
  3. Get a new job ASAP and quit my current job
    1. I have basically zero interest in this because:
      1. There's no off-ramp on the horizon
      2. I will be running on fumes
      3. Although I currently carve out time for learning while employed, I feel like I can exponentially improve my skillset during my hiatus when learning is my 9-5.
So basically, I'm down to get a 2nd job with my current skillset, but if/when I decide to reframe things less around jobs/instant $, and more around career/sustainability, I will need to take time off to decompress and refocus.

Once again, I appreciate you @Rawtid for asking a seemingly simple question that forces me to reevaluate my purpose and the driving forces behind my actions 🙏🏾
 
Last edited:

Rawtid

Veteran
Supporter
Joined
Jun 23, 2012
Messages
42,525
Reputation
14,339
Daps
116,223
Oh I was saying leave that bullshyt ass job you’re at now to make at least market rate. They’ve basically said “fukk you, this is the best pay you’re going to get. As you complete your professional development, you can find a role that at least pays where you want to be. Costs are only going up, so might as well land something that’s paying.

You know for sure the job you’re at now won’t pay market, so why stay?

I feel you’re better than this job, so fukk ‘em.
 

Rawtid

Veteran
Supporter
Joined
Jun 23, 2012
Messages
42,525
Reputation
14,339
Daps
116,223
Also, I don’t think you should be afraid of not having free time or time to learn new skills because if you align the new role with what you’re learning, you could be doing both. Or the new job may not require as much time.

I just don’t want you learning a bunch of new concepts, but waiting months to use them. If you can get where you want to be now with one job, I say it’s worth exploring.
 

Macallik86

Superstar
Supporter
Joined
Dec 4, 2016
Messages
4,457
Reputation
870
Daps
13,845
☝🏾 Appreciate your input. Although I have been emotional over the situation in many posts, I'm back to once again making what I perceive to be the most rational decision. The company doesn't define my worth and I no longer feel slighted about the below-average salary. At the same time, I am actively working on automating as much as possible, which will be followed by an effort to lasso a second job. As it stands right now, I have zero in quitting my current role & immediately start a new job until I at the least take a +3 month work sabbatical or the standalone job pays 2x my current salary.

Completed Course​

Got this course for free over two years ago. I think I found about it via one of those Twitter bots that tweet links to temporarily free Udemy Courses, so it felt good learning for free.

So to the unfamiliar, VBA is a programming language within Microsoft Office products that allow you to automate tasks. Excel is where I've seen it used the most but like you can click a button and Excel can automatically pull data from SQL Server, create a chart in Excel and then export + paste that chart in PowerPoint. It's a beast.

In terms of my skill level with VBA... I run a few reports that use it and I have to troubleshoot the code when something breaks, but since I'm not well versed, that usually involved me googling and trying a few things before I kick it higher up the chain to resolve.

After taking the course, the biggest realization is that getting tasks completed with "just enough knowledge" thanks to Google feels productive in the moment, but without that deeper understanding, that often-used but neglected skill eventually leads to inefficiencies/stress... It feels like a struggle to keep your head afloat maintaining a report that is slowly breaking. I'm sure some of you've had that sinking feeling when the solution on StackOverflow doesn't work on there are only two other relevant, but much-harder-to-read answers suggestions left😭

I was a little unsure at first about the course, but once again things are not nearly as intimidating once I stopped thinking about it and instead, started actually doing it. The biggest aha moment was realizing that the idea of Object-Oriented Programming is something I learned about in JavaScript. I was able to quickly find my footing logically when it comes to object methods/properties. Also dot notation was a quick learn thanks to JavaScript as well.

Next Steps​

I am planning on taking the Advanced SQL Server Course next, but I also realize that I have already learned enough to start automating tasks. I was thinking about doubling my daily study sessions, but now I am going to try and have at least once session daily geared towards automating work at my job. I kicked things off today by creating a few user-defined table functions that quickly return data and simple but repetitive questions. For example, it usually takes 8 lines of SQL code to answer questions around the size of a company, or the type of coverage they have, or when their contract is up, etc. but with the user-defined table functions, I can grab that data in 4 words.

I have a few more common queries to create this for before I move onto the next automation task. I will share the outline soon, but the general idea is that the work automation projects become more complex as I move down the list.
 
Last edited:

Macallik86

Superstar
Supporter
Joined
Dec 4, 2016
Messages
4,457
Reputation
870
Daps
13,845

Completed Course​

gYtHmOO.png

Being that the prior course I took already gave me a better understanding of SQL, I thought that a lot of this course would be redundant. I was wrong.

This course was way better than I expected. He introduced me to a few SQL themes that I'd only seen briefly on StackOverflow when I had a unique issue years ago. On top of that, this course allows me manipulation more data within SQL, which cuts on my dependency on Excel to create a clean output.

As for the exercises, the instructor had a good approach where you test your skills after each lesson to reinforce what you’ve learned but he doesn’t try to trip you up or throw you for a loop. He takes you out of your comfort zone, but it never feels like you're swimming on the deep end if you paid attention to the prior lesson.

There is one downside that I think will resolve itself over time. They say when you have a hammer, everything looks like a nail. Well on the flipside, this course taught me so many different approaches to querying data that it gave me more tools than I know what to do with. So when I get a task at work, there is this moment of indecision where I have to decide which tool is best suited for the job, and my understanding of that is still a little shaky at times.

Next Steps​

A part of me wants to jump right into Python but I think a better route is to finish the Git course first and start utilizing Git more efficiently to build out my portfolio on GitHub. A part of me is of the mind that I don't want/need to share my online course exercises on GitHub, but alternatively, I think that the more lines of code in there the better 🤔
 
Top