9 Resources for Women to Quickly Pick Up Technical SkillsBY: The Young Entrepreneur Council | July 30, 2012
What are the best resources, on or offline, for female founders to brush up on technical skills?
The following answers are provided by the Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), an invite-only nonprofit organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. The YEC recently published #FixYoungAmerica: How to Rebuild Our Economy and Put Young Americans Back to Work (for Good), a book of 30+ proven solutions to help end youth unemployment.
1. Everyone Should Check Out Codecademy
Codecademy is an amazing site that helps anyone to learn to code. Whether you’re a seasoned techie or someone new to the space, Codecademy can help take you to the next level or help you brush up on your skills. Technical skills are not just about being able to code though; it’s about training your logical and analytical thinking too. Codecademy can help. Plus, it’s fun!
- Doreen Bloch, Poshly Inc.
2. Start With Startup Training School
As a co-founder, I’m obviously biased, but having taught myself all of the technical skills needed to run multiple online businesses, the School has been designed to help ease this process for others. With a Skills Library of tutorials, plus in-depth courses for the most common online tools, students have agreed that being taught by a woman is a refreshing change in this male-dominated arena!
- Lea Woodward, Startup Training School
3. Look Into Local User Groups
I’m a big fan of going through local groups, if only because I need to make friends with someone who I know won’t judge when I ask a truly stupid question. Most user groups are welcoming and several have ladies-only subgroups. I’ve found that even with the best tutorials and books, I eventually need to ask a human a few questions, so user groups are a good fit.
- Thursday Bram, Hyper Modern Consulting
4. Google Your Way to Tech-Savvy
While it’s nice to take formal training for technology, since it’s constantly changing, the ability to learn on the fly and Google what you need when you need it is crucial. Female founders especially need to get comfortable teaching themselves the technology they need by watching videos or reading articles found on the go.
- Nathalie Lussier, Nathalie Lussier Media
5. Go for The Girl’s Guide to Web Design
6. Employ Blogs, Webinars and Podcasts
I regularly read blogs like Mashable and TechCrunch to learn about technology trends and new tools that would be useful for my company. I also subscribe to Inc. Magazine — which has many resources available online as well — which is one of my favorite resources as a startup founder. Aside from these resources, you can also build your skills by attending webinars and listening to podcasts.
- Heather Huhman, Come Recommended
7. Free Video Tutorials Are Readily Available
With so many free video tutorials, you no longer need to pay for a course to brush up on your tech skills. I recommend Woopid, CBT Cafe, and Tubetorial as go-to sites. There is something for everyone!
- Alexandra Levit, Inspiration at Work
8. Get With Girls In Tech (GIT)
One of the best resources built for women in technology is a global organization called Girls In Tech (GIT). This program has chapter workshops in all areas of technology, and also offers a variety of roundtable and panel discussions with other developers. Many chapters in all major hubs worldwide exist — it is worth exploring!
- Carmen Benitez, Fetch Plus
9. Simply Shadow an Engineer
Working at a high-tech company in the Silicon Valley gives me plenty of opportunity to interact with technical engineers that can teach me a thing or two about code and process innovation. Sometimes, the best resource is seeking time with an engineer to see how they solve issues by applying technical problem solving skills. Shadowing an engineer allows you to acquire technical skills as well.
- Aj Thomas, Infuse Entrepreneurship Foundation