Over the years, I’ve seen a lot of students in on-ground classes, online classes and hybrid courses too. Though the technology has constantly changed, certain things have not.

Check out the five online habits used by high performers in adult, online education:

  • Successful learners stay in touch with the online environment. Some login once or twice a day, every day. Others synch their wireless phones with a variety of discussion forums and announcements. Whatever their exact method is for staying in touch with current events and technology, the highest scoring professionals don’t wander away for days and then rush to catch up. It is part of their work day.
  • They make the time. Every couple of weeks, a learner sends me an email detailing why how they ran out of time due to circumstances out of their control and can’t finish their assignment, and could they now please have more time. The funny thing is, these emails can run 500-700 words in length which leads me to think that if they had the time to write all that, they had time to do their learning project. The most successful professionals never ask for more time because they carve out as little as twenty minutes a day to stay on top of their goals.
  • They control their time.It’s not enough just to make time, you have to control it. Did you know as much as 25% of our time is spent shifting back and forth between projects? People call this multi-tasking but at the end of an eight hour day, that’s two whole hours spent doing nothing but figuring out what you’re doing. Successful professionals dedicate blocks of time to each activity and combine similar activities together. For example: twenty minutes in the online professional forums. Then, full stop. Work on a related project. Work for twenty-minutes. Full stop. Respond to emails for twenty minutes.Full stop, etc. You’d be amazed what super-busy managers produce can produce in just an hour, just by managing their time firmly. It isn’t just about work either. Remember to include time to rest and time to play- you need that too.
  • Leverage new technology. Almost all the best new technology used in workplaces is introduced by a fellow employee, not a tech salesperson. Employees are always coming up with new ways to save time, how to present work more effectively or to find resources faster. If something seems hard, google around a bit and see if there is a free app to make it easier. If there isn’t maybe you could build one and become the next Internet billionaire.
  • Reach out and get connected. Where are you going? What are your goals? Don’t just sit back and wait for your next job to come to you. The most effective professionals are continuously writing and reading information from prospective employers, professional associations, and the competition.