Do you remember a time in your life when you felt like you could learn anything? The processes of learning seemed almost effortless. This might have been while you were in school or just starting a new job. There was an excitement just from the simplicity of learning something new. You may even have had the ability to read something over once, write a test and receive an A. You not only enjoyed learning, but you also enjoyed receiving that A.
If we stop and look at high-level performers in athletics and in business, one thing they have in common is a passion for learning. High-level performers are passionate about learning and applying their new knowledge.
They are natural learners and their learning goes beyond the formal classroom or e-learning course. High-level performers are masters of informal learning, as they are always in a learning mode.
With an increasing competitive global market and the continuous need for innovation, high-performance organizations know ongoing learning is necessary to remain competitive. However, many overlook the informal learning opportunities that occur daily within their own organization.
So, a good place to start is to ask: What learning qualities do high-level performers possess that allow them to be great learners?
High-level performance learners are:
Natural knowledge seekers
High-level performers are always seeking out new opportunities for learning. This could be something as simple as attending a lunch-and-learn session or something more involved, like doing an executive MBA (which incorporates formal an informal learning!).
Masters of informal learning
As mentioned earlier, high-level performers are masters of informal learning. The passion they possess for their pursuits drives them to seek out new knowledge, and in the digital age, they have access to a multitude of learning sources. They have the ability to learn something and quickly decide if it is something they can act on, or it is just “nice to know”.
Committed to learning
High-level performers possess a deep commitment to learning. They know that if they want to stay innovative and current, ongoing learning is critical. They view learning as a “fuel source” for continuous performance improvement.
High-level performers are experts at reflective learning. They have the ability to reflect on their performance, determine what is working and what isn’t working, make adjustments and act on these reflective learning lessons.
High-level performers view feedback from their coaches as a great resource for learning. They will naturally seek out the coaches within their organizations – sometimes it will be a manager or a person in a role that they desire. They are looking for advice and in some case just direction in order to improve their performance. Their motivation by this type of learning comes from viewing the coach as the “tellers” of knowledge to improve performance.
Learning formally and informally, is an absolute necessity for any organization striving to improve performance. Vanished are the days when learning was seen as a “nice to have” for an organization. If performance improvement is the goal of the organization, just look at any high-level performer to get a sense of their commitment and investment they put into learning.
Turn Your Knowledge into Action
1) Determine the way people and teams in your organization can leverage informal learning opportunities to help elevate performance.
2) Take one action this week to ensure you are learning something new that will help you elevate your performance.
If you would like to learn more about how I can assist your organization to elevate their performance levels, please contact me at 416-429-1247 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
All the best in achieving your highest performance.
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