How does learning in the workplace differ from traditional secondary or post-secondary training? As we continue to evolve, uncover, and learn more about how the brain functions and the art of teaching and learning, we realize that learning is a continuous journey. It comes in all shapes and sizes, contents and styles, modes of delivery and methods of instruction but the one thing that remains constant is that learning never ends.
Everything that occurs outside of a natural setting has been engineered. All things man-made have been created in a certain form for a particular purpose. We are surrounded by sensory inputs from the moment we open our eyes in the morning until the moment we close them in the evening. As time elapses, the form and function of those things that surround us change to become the next best version. Human beings are no different. We continue to receive information and compare it to what we’ve known to be true based on our personal experience. When the information received and what we thought we knew don’t align, we experience something known as cognitive dissonance. We struggle to make sense of the new information and that’s where the magic happens. New neural pathways are formed in our brains and this process leads to learning. It is only through the discomfort that we are stretched to grow.
Obsoletion occurs to people, positions, products, communities, and companies that fail to challenge innovation. It is critical that we seek a diverse group of critical thinkers and problem solvers to help us think out of the box and challenge us to be better in all aspects of our lives. Since we want to hire those go-getters of innovation, we must provide them with stretch assignments in the workplace that will appropriately challenge their skills. From the C-suite to the boots on the floor, it is vital to make work relevant and rigorous.
Never underestimate a positive attitude and ability to adapt in a changing environment. Agility is a key skill in the current landscape of life. We are more connected, globally, than ever before and the ‘small world’ concept is truer each day. Success comes when folks can take the barrage of daily information and discern what is useful in making meaningful decisions knowing that it will likely change tomorrow.