This time last year, ‘Tableau’ had not made it to my vocabulary. I had heard of ‘Alteryx’ but never used it. So how did I get into the ‘The Data School Down Under’? It all started when I was looking for a change from my education and teaching career. I was exploring options, but nothing hit the chords till I heard about Tableau and started working on it. It has been quite an exciting journey from first hearing about it in July last year to my first tableau public viz a month and half later (I keep thinking of taking my first viz off my profile, but then it reminds me of my growth).

The learning continued and I attended the first meet and greet of Data School Down Under in October last year. It was a great evening getting to know the coaches, members of the first cohort and prospective analysts. Talking to them and attending the presentations made me even more interested in this career option. I knew I did not have a background in the field, but I also knew that the best in business will be teaching us during the first four months of intensive training. By the end of that day I had chosen my new area of work.

What followed was long hours in front of computer cruising my way through application and feedback and finally getting through the final interview. I would like to share a few things that helped me make it through the other side:

  • Keeping self-doubt at bay and focusing on my strengths. In my case, I think it was story telling and looking for clean, clutter free ways to present a meaningful message.
  • Realizing that most problems have been solved before and have been shared by the wonderful online community. This encouraged me to try harder things and improving my skills in seeking and applying knowledge available online to my problems.
  • Participating in online projects such as Makeover Monday and using the feedback to improve.

It has been one week into training and let me tell you, it’s been highly intensive. We have done four days of Alteryx from learning around 30 tools to building analytics app and more! It does feel like a lot to digest, however, with regular practice I am sure I will get there. The next week is Tableau and I can’t wait to see what’s in store for us.

Shuchita Sharma
Author: Shuchita Sharma