inspiring outstanding leaders

Passionately inspiring lifelong learning

In Uncategorized on 2 November 2009 at 9:57 pm

In November my passion for learning has been well and truly reignited and I am starting to have lots of ideas about inspiring learning in others. After saying goodbye to my training role in February I consciously closed that door to allow me to focus on my new role as manager. However, over the last week I have come almost a complete circle as I realized that my style of managing was all about developing my team of ‘learners’ and brining out the best in them. Yes, I am not standing up in front of a training room motivating and inspiring individuals to learn but instead, through my thoughts, words and actions I am encouraging development at a much more fundamental level.

I guess ‘training’ for me had become a forbidden pleasure, one that I was preventing myself from indulging in to concentrate on things that didn’t come so naturally or were as pleasurable. Training had also become all about product knowledge and the best way that my team learn that is by on the job ‘doing’ so it didn’t need me to get too involved. While reading Power Up Your Mind by Bill Lucas, see review below, I have started to think about planning and structuring new learning courses, ones that develop the skills that I want my team to have now they have climbed high on the product knowledge ladder.

Bill Lucas introduces the concept that we all have multiple intelligences such as Emotional, Social, Physical, Practical and Spiritual. He concludes that to achieve effective learning it is essential to develop all your intelligences and not just your IQ. This thinking resonates with me because it brings together wisdoms I have learnt and supports some of my actions this year. I know that supporting my children’s emotional and social well being is far more important than ensuring that they can read and write before they go to school, sure I want them to be achieving academically, but I also want them to love learning and they need my support of their other intelligences to engage effectively with the learning on offer at school. The concept of maintaining similar development across all your intelligences also explains why starting the sport of triathlon this year, on top of all my other commitments, was actually a sensible and logical action. The reaction I get from some people when I mention that I am swimming, cycling and running is of amazement and they then ask “Why would you want to do that?” and “How do you find the time?”. Developing my physical intelligence is all the motivation I need to know that sprinkling exercise through my weekly routine is helping me to keep my ‘life wheel’ running smoothly.

What I have learnt is that the majority of learning actually happens outside a classroom and it is exciting to see your whole life as a learning opportunity. I will certainly be actively seeking opportunities to develop each of my intelligences and, as difficult as I find it to do, if I can reflect and draw learning on these experiences then I will be a happier person for it.

I would love to hear what you think, please post your comments below.

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  1. I agree with you that it’s important to continuously develop our skills across our different “intelligences”. Furthermore, what’s interesting is that by improving skills in one area you will also directly or indirectly benefit in others. The wonders of cross-training. Hence, the more you learn, the greater the velocity in knowledge acquisition; it becomes deeper and broader.

    To your point that the majority of learning happens outside the classroom, I believe this is something many forget. We all know that we need to study while in school, but often forget to do so once the school curriculum is over. I’m a strong advocate of continuous learning and adaptation. It’s one of my passions and always strive to further develop myself. Learning is a never ending challenge and opportunity.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Alex

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