DIY Projects is our answer to the challenging question "How do I get experience"?
Many people first learn the new skill and then try to get experience by applying for jobs. What is the problem? Many companies say; well... You do not have sufficient experience in "this" skill so we cannot employ you which creates a "chicken and egg" situation where you gain experience with a tool by getting a job, but you cannot get the job because you do not have the experience to do the job.
You just have to complete a project and gain experience. Do you need a job for that? No! You just need time, skills and a project.
Is it just about experience with a "new skill"? No! It's actually practical knowledge of applying your skills to a project so when someone says you do not have sufficient experience generally they mean both general experience on a project + practical tool experience (with exceptions). This means that people with a lot of project experience and little experience with a new tool may have a much greater chances of getting a job, however DIY Project can help you get project experience and if you combine it with your own hard work (study + project effort) then you can compete with people who have more job experience than you have.
This may not sound very positive to some people, but here it goes.... "Working on a project will often reveal your skill gaps and weaknesses!" There you go I said it. Is it a bad thing? Absolutely not! It is a golden opportunity to fill in gaps and either neutralize weaknesses or change them into strengths.
Some people are surprised when someone says they don't have sufficient experience and my previous sentence can give you a hint why. Most people will avoid offending you so they will not tell you directly your skill gaps or weaknesses as most people are not aware of them so naturally they don't "understand" the reason and are likely to be offended.
I strongly recommend to be very open minded and look for skill gaps and weaknesses, focus on this during the project and that can give you a real experience boost!
We choose projects where you can make decisions, therefore you should be able to self-assess your project results by making an actual decision and see the outcome of it.
Once you complete the project I recommend to put it on a CV like a normal work (project) experience. I believe this is perfectly fine as almost all work experience is project based therefore putting it on CV may result in questions to you related to the project during the face to face interview, which is a great opportunity to share your specific experience and skills that you gained during this project.
What is DIYProject?
In the past, I would say during seminars to simply create your own project (or BI project, which I was referring to) but I realize "simply" is actually not that simple and many people will simply not do it.
I've learnt on my oversimplified statement and came up with an idea of creating DIY Projects where each one will contain:
- Clear primary objective(s).
- Secondary objectives (optional).
- The option to customize objectives
- Satisfaction Matrix
- You will self-score your work.
- Real life requests/decision (personal life) so almost anyone can do it.
- I will explain how this personal life project relates to business related projects.
- Recommended learning plans (study).
- Full life cycle experience.
- Freedom to design, implement and test it.
- Freedom to use your existing skills (Do your best with what you know or want to study).
This is your project so you will be responsible for everything!
The objectives will relate to your personal life so you should be able self-rate your success at the end of the project.
List of Projects