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Are you too certain to learn?

By | David Klaasen | Helping You Create Clarity, Inspire Your People & Drive Performance | Retain your best people | Changing Management Mindsets and Behaviour | Practical Behaviour Analytics

The ability to rapidly learn and apply new ways of working is the key to business success, especially in our knowledge based economy. The dramatic changes in technology are leaving some senior people stranded as they struggle to manage the vast amounts of information required to run a successful business. But there is also something else that can inhibit your ability to learn.

Developing strategies to sort the wheat from the chaff is a whole new skill that needs to be acquired. We are bombarded with so many messages and distractions that it is becoming increasingly difficult to find the answers we are looking for. But if we are not careful we can miss a piece of the jigsaw that has the solution to the issues our business is facing.

I was recently working as a Coach on a high level international communication skills course. Many of the participants were already experts in communication in their own areas and had come to learn how to decode and use specific language patterns to better understand, predict and influence the behaviour of others. It was a very demanding course with specific measures to assess whether participants were able to elegantly demonstrate the required levels of competence.

It was interesting to note that the people who felt they already knew it all, and who were not good at receiving feedback were the last people to meet the standard, and some almost didn’t make it. The key to effective learning is being open to feedback. In previous articles like “Is ‘Captainitis’ getting the better of you?” I discuss how being ‘certain’ about what you know can be fatal.

The below conscious drivers

According to the research that Rodger Bailey did about motivation patterns in the workplace, 40% of the population are motivated by having an external benchmark or standard to measure themselves by.

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