What are the five most important skills that a successful professional in GIS should have? I have recorded a three-part video series (Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3) wherein I address this important issue.
I begin the video series by presenting two ways of thinking about GIS in your career: (1) As a toolset that you use in your career as a biologist, public safety officer, marketing analyst, or in another career where GIS is listed only as a required or advised set of skills; and (2) As a GIS manager, technician, analyst, or another career where GIS or a variant is a part of the title and primary job duties.
I see GIS as a three-legged stool, one that incorporates content knowledge, skills, and the geographic perspective. In other words, the skills alone will not guarantee success, but are a fundamental part of it. Equally important is the content knowledge–whether in GIScience, meteorology, energy, water resources, planning, or another field. Finally, don’t be discouraged by my mention of the geographic perspective if you feel inadequate here. It is one of the most interesting parts of the stool, and one that might take years to develop. Indeed, as most things in GIS, it is a lifelong endeavor, which leads me to my #1 top skill: I can’t give it away: Watch the video to find out!
I realize that many “Top” lists are subjective, mine included. Yet I purposely used this format for this list precisely so that the can be debated, argued, and modified. I invite you to do so by posting your reflections and comments.