Keep Learning

“Keep Learning” is a fitting theme as I enter the world of blogdom. Why are some people so fresh and vibrant and able to deal with change? One reason, they keep learning. They never fall into the trap of thinking they know it all. My dad is 78 now. At 74 he received his private pilot’s license and at age 75 he played his first musical instrument. One of the reason’s his farm was successful through the 80’s when many farms were going under was his ability to change, learn, and diversify. His mother was known for reading a book a day and she read every book in two libraries. While I am grateful for this legacy, I see how I must be intentional if I am going to continue it.

The worst sales people are “Know-it-alls”. The best leaders are learners. Peter Vaill, in his book “Learning as a way of Being” points out the most important competency to today is not technical but rather the ability, humility, and desire to keep on learning. In this fast-paced culture we must develop the priority and system to keep learning. One learns very little by watching TV. What are a few simple ideas to keep learning:

  1. Turn your car into a university by listening to podcasts and CDs while driving.
  2. Intentionally read every day – books and articles are likely better than just the newspaper.
  3. Find a Mentor. Brian Foote said, “The key to success is having a mentor.” I have had mentors for speaking, leadership, Real Estate, and faith. Is it worth it? ABSOLUTELY!
  4. Be observant.
  5. Reflect. Get away. Process. Great learning occurs in times of reflection of every day experience.

One thought to remember; the goal is not to learn everything – it can’t happen in this world of rapid change. The freshness that comes with just learning and continually learning how to learn is the goal. In this world of change I want to hire people that know how to learn because what I need them to do tomorrow not in the MBA text book today.

Keeping on learning,

Dave Horsager

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