We have all heard the phrase “use it or lose it”. This applies to many aspects of our life, not just the often associated physical fitness part of our lives that we immediately think of after hearing this. It applies to our brains, our psyche, our influence, and in the leader’s world, our learning ability. In the life of the leader, learning is the capacity to effect change as a result of turning new information into action. The greatest of leaders do this proactively in response to new information that must be integrated in a world where information overload and more data “magically” translates into “better” outcomes.
We have all been there before. We are in the boardroom and someone blurts out this amazing and life-changing thought for your team or division. The room is abuzz with excitement and plentiful hope. The magnitude of the thought that has just flown into the air is nearly unimaginable. People are feverishly taking notes and colleagues are offering their praises. “This will surely put an end to (insert the problem of the week/month/quarter here).” A few more agenda items are quickly ticked off and the team forms a procession around the creative genius that spawned this magnificent notion. Many of those desperate to seek a solution join in the celebration and you can hear the pats on the back as you scurry off to another meeting. Great! Problem solved…Next! Whoa! But…wait a minute!