Yoda’s skepticism of Luke Skywalker’s readiness to begin training as a Jedi Knight was probably appropriate. I mean, if some guy wearing Marty McFly’s life preserver vest crash landed into my backyard with his robot sidekick in tow and brought a bad attitude too, I might feel the same way. Thankfully, Obi-Wan talked Yoda off the ledge and possibly one of the greatest films of all time didn’t end with Luke and R2 stuck on Dagobah playing space chess. Instead, we got to see Luke do some amazing things, not least of all survive a dangerous encounter on Bespin, and all because of that Jedi training.

I’ve given many training sessions to clients over the years and it is something that I really enjoy. Teaching people how to think about data, how to use it and how to create great content with it is rewarding, and I like seeing clients get excited about using their new skills. If you think I’m an anomaly, you’d be wrong (at least if the sample size is Red Pill). I’ve never worked with a group of people that are so passionate about sharing their knowledge and helping others grow. It really is a unique group and this focus on learning helps us remember that training shouldn’t be an after thought for most projects.

Passion aside, I know that many of us at Red Pill have worked outside of consulting throughout our careers, and many of us in roles that directly used the skills that are needed when using BI and Analytics tools. Most of us remember how difficult it could be learning a new tool, having trouble getting data to look good in a visualization, or not getting our models exactly correct, and having to answer to business users. Being able to show trainees what is possible in a new solution is part of the reason for training as it sparks belief in the system and in the concepts. Like Yoda lifting Luke’s X-Wing out of the swamp, sometimes you don’t think it is possible until you see it with your own eyes.

Also, we believe in the power of “doing”. Giving our trainees hands on access to the data, tools and seeing the concepts in action is the best way to learn. That’s why we’ve created the first ever immersion style training for BI and DI with the Jump Program. It’s also why we have a flexible, modular platform that we use to help people learn what they want to and need to, not just what’s in the course guide.

We’re not quite as Boolean as Yoda’s training philosophy…

I’ve told you a few things that make a great training session above. But, want to know the real secret sauce to a great training session? It’s listening to the trainees and putting examples into terms and situations they can relate to in their day to day work. It isn’t rocket science. Heck, it isn’t even computer science or data science. It’s just making an effort to bring understanding, passion and getting some “dirt under the fingernails” time together with the trainees. Challenging everything doesn’t necessarily mean complicating everything.

Here at Red Pill we believe that training shouldn’t be an afterthought or the last phase of UAT in implementation projects. We believe that it should be something that should be able to stand on its own merit. If you’re interested in learning more about how we view training or our offerings, head to our training page on our website or contact us. And remember, we believe you can become a Data Jedi, even if you crash your X-Wing into our backyard.

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