Demetrios is the founder of the MLOps Community. He likes interviewing people and playing improvised songs on the guitar.
Continued Learning Ain’t Cheap
We all know there are great options to dive deeper into your field of expertise. Sometimes to upskill watching YouTube videos or asking chatgpt doesn’t cut it.
Many companies in the tech space offer a learning budget for the continued growth of their employees.
It doesn’t cover every situation though. What about the courses that exceed the yearly learning budget? What about if your company doesn’t have a policy for learning budgets?
For those cases where you need to fork over your hard-earned money to get better at your job, we’ve got you covered.
Here are three email templates. Use them. Choose one, adapt it, and send it to your boss asking for the company to cover your course fees.
We are using the recent MLOps community courses as the example here, but you can get the gist of the form and apply it to any course you need.
I do not take responsibility if you copy-paste this and then get fired.
Use your own judgment!
That being said if you do get fired, I will help you find a job where your employer will pay for your continued learning
Share in My Glory Approach
You may have noticed that I have been performing on an elevated level since [date you joined the community].
Some in the organization have even gone as far as to say I am carrying the team. We don’t need to get into specifics. That’s not what this correspondence is about.
It is about something more important. I haven’t been fully transparent with you. I am glad we have the trust for me to tell you this.
While you may have thought I was a magician or a rockstar or a 10x coder, I actually had help.
And no it wasn’t ChatGPT.
While others scoured the depths of stack overflow, I never had to waste my time. I found my people.
Cards on the table. I’ve been learning from the great minds in the MLOps Community. This brings me to why I am reaching out.
They recently launched their first-ever course.
After 3 years of continual hard work to keep the community high quality AND immensely valuable, they are finally allowing me, nay us, a way to give back. While up-skilling.This first course will show how to create an LLM question-and-answer bot that is ready for production.
Why is that important to you?
Now when your superiors ask “What are we doing with ‘AI’?” You have a great story.
You are the hero. You can tell them, that not only do you believe in the transformational power of AI for this organization, but you went above and beyond.
You put your money where your mouth is. You paid for the whole team to get training from the most reputable AI establishment on the internet.
I come to you today not asking for you to pay for my course. No. I come to see if you want to share this opportunity to be an exemplar of human leadership. To signal to our team and to the greater organization that we are serious about the AI wave.
Direct and to the Point
Learning about [insert topic here] will help me [actionable outcome] for our next project. I would like to expense the course cost of [cost] to the company.
This is what it would look like in practice:
Learning about retrieval augmented generation will help me understand vector databases and embeddings for our internal question-and-answer bot. I would like to expense the course cost of $149 to the company.
Over the last [amount of time you worked at the company] we have been able to align strongly on our shared outcomes and values. As you know from our last employee review I am glad to have developed a deep trust with you.
I only remind you this because I wouldn’t ask just anything of you.
In fact, I hardly ask much of you at all. My grandma died last week and you wouldn’t know it.
It was work as normal.
I’m not looking for pity. I am telling you this to help you understand how important what I say to you next is.
I believe that enrolling in the online course Building QA bots with LLMs will help us achieve our goal of leveraging internal data to help members of the organization get up to speed on various projects.
If we can save just 2% of employees time when they are onboarding to a new project, that equates to roughly [$x] in annual savings. Considering the course costs [$250] that easily makes the decision ROI positive.
Thanks for all your support throughout my career development.