Getting the most from Trailhead

Anyone in the Salesforce ecosystem will know about Trailhead. It is a mighty resource but there are some points to note to get the best value from this incredible resource.

Start with an aim in mind. Focus on a particular topic of study. This could be to understand a concept or get hands-on practice to learn a new feature, or study for a certification. By focusing on a topic you get to explore it in an in-depth way rather than in a superficial way.

The hands-on exercises will get you going but you will have to practice more using your own examples or requirements otherwise you run the risk of paint-by-numbers syndrome where you feel you are doing something but you are really just following a sequence of steps. This might work to build muscle memory for certain tasks but you will find it challenging to apply the same steps in different but related scenarios.

The best thing and the worst thing about Trailhead is the gamification. It’s all too easy to get caught up in earning badges and accumulating points without really applying yourself. It’s great if you do both – earn and learn – but mostly pointless if all you’re doing is getting hooked on badges and points.

For maximum results combine the trails and related modules with other resources – such as the recommended resources at the end of most modules and the numerous quality Salesforce-related blogs – to consolidate your learning.

Set aside time, daily if possible, to learn and grow your skills starting with Trailhead. By making it a daily habit you develop consistently over time and the compounding payoff is huge. The points and badges will follow.

Zaheer Ismail