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The Importance of Mentors in Data Science

There is more to becoming a data scientist than what meets the eye. The turbulent times the world is witnessing has resulted in a surge in the demand for data science professionals. The students, aspirants, professionals from different fields have shown keen interest in making the most of the situation. However, a great cloud of confusion clouds the field of data science and analytics. A lot rides on the performance of the data professionals and the employers are often as much at a loss about how to approach things as the data analysts themselves.

While the stakes rise and the demand increases, there are few who are actually making a real impact. This is what necessitates the involvement of more practised hands, people who have waded through the shallow waters of indecision and confusion; made their share of mistakes; and emerged triumphant. The mentors can play an incredibly significant role in helping the data science industry mature and the professionals solidify their footing.

Who are these mentors?

Ideally mentors are professionals who have been a part of the industry for quite some time, enough to have built networks and earned the expert status. These are practically generous people who find time in their highly valued time to help out youngsters for a very small fraction of the money they could have made with that time by providing consultation to corporate bodies.

How can they help you?

As a data science professional you will have to solve a lot of problems. The first one that you have to tackle even before you start is finding your way through the clutter of information and misinformation, worthy material and wordy junk, free boot camps and expensive courses. You are choosing an outright technical career which is nothing like anything else; it is a given that you will have to make some monetary investments and invest a fair amount of time. Then again you might find it difficult to translate your technical skills into problem solving apparatus. The mentor will help you in each of these steps. A mentor helps you find the right material; enrol for the right course; choose the right subject. They are the pathfinders.  

What are the most desirable qualities in a mentor?

A lot of people can be good at data science. All of them may know the right tools and the correct procedure of going about things but only a few of them can be good mentors. Each aspirant requires something different from the mentor. A good mentor understands each of the aspirants and tries to provide personalized care to each. This personalization is probably the most important feature of a mentor’s guidance. Learning data analytics in Malaysia would have been much harder had it not been for the mentors. For a country that depends so much on data analytics, mentors play an essential role.  

Where to find a mentor?

Your workplace may assign you with one ifr you are lucky. If not, you can look for a mentor in forums or on linkedin. If that does not work either, do not worry. There are certain data science institutes in Malaysia which provide you with mentoring along with technical training. You should be good to go.  

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