It's hard not to get depressed or upset (depending on how you view it) when you see the headlines that speak of the two per cent wage increase when the Trinidad and Tobago Central Bank announced that inflation for 2022 is at 4.1 per cent. That doesn't make much of a difference for you. However, I will also tell people that these are subtle reminders for us to start looking into new ways to create the lives that we want to live.
The world has changed and continues to change daily. We here in Trinidad & Tobago need to start realising that we have yet to fully embrace the Digital Age and everything it has to offer.
The beautiful thing is in the Digital Age, our incomes have no cap and we are not limited by geography. Whilst we are still spoon fed by all traditional forms of education to go down the traditional career choices, digital jobs and skills are now mature enough that they should no longer be classified as risky.
These skills would allow you to land either work as a freelancer and participate in the 'Gig Economy' or you will be able to work for a company around the world whilst you are still physically living in T&T, getting paid in another currency. Another fun fact is that these skills will also allow you to go past "work from home" and get into the realm of "work from anywhere".
Allow me to introduce you to 12 digital skills, considered high-income digital skills, that you can start learning . Now, there are way more than 12 high-income digital skills available to learn but I wanted to give you a starting point so that you can go down the rabbit hole in your research.
1) Web development
2) Software developer
3) Search engine optimization (SEO) specialist
4) Digital marketer
5) Content market or content creator
7) Video editor
8) Blockchain specialist
10) User experience (UX)
11) Project management
The absolutely beautiful thing about any of these skills is that you can learn them from online schools, take short courses, read books, join forums, get certified online, and do this whilst you are still in secondary school or if you have a full-time job and looking to make a career switch or get a supplemental income.
When I started my tech blog Droid Island back in 2016, some of the first skills I learned that eventually allowed me to move from just being a tech blogger to turning it into a business were learning WordPress web development, digital marketing, e-commerce, search engine optimisation, and content marketing.
Those skills allowed me to build my digital presence so that when my consumers would Google anything related to smartphones, my website would show up with articles teaching them about some of the most searched topics in T&T relating to phones. They would then be able to click on the links to products I recommended and make purchases right on my website via credit card payment or online bank transfers.
The reason why skills like web development and SEO are so important for business owners is because of Google and other search engines.
Anytime someone has a question or a problem, they jump on a search engine to do their research and links to a website or videos on YouTube will pop up providing the information they need. Links to products are also displayed and then once the website is e-commerce-ready, purchases can be made online without having to speak to anybody.
If you are looking to learn some of the skills mentioned, here are some of the top places I recommend doing the courses and certification programmes.
1) HubSpot Academy
4) Google Digital Garage
Check out these platforms and go searching for some of the skills mentioned earlier.
When you have these skills you can now build your profile and gain clients around the world on platforms like Fiverr, Freelancer.com, Upwork or regional platforms like Workii, Checkwi.com or ilandgigs.com.
If the gig economy is not for you, then this is where you need to brush up your LinkedIn profile and start looking for jobs there and connecting with recruiters. Globally, recruiters are on LinkedIn looking for remote talent to bring into their organisations and these are the opportunities that Trinbagonians should be looking to take full advantage of.
Working for international companies will expose our local market, raise our skill sets, build our work ethic, and bring in Forex and we can start to see these things making an impact on our country.
I hope this article gave you a starting point to starting that new career or getting those new skills to generate additional income.
To learn more about building and monetising your digital presence, visit Keronrose.com and check out the Digipreneur FM podcast on all podcast platforms.