I am always striving to learn and broaden my knowledge base. I thought I would share with you some ideas on growing and learning that I have been thinking about. Take new ideas, concepts and thoughts, as suggestion and food for thought, not as absolutes. Don’t be quick to try something because it is the newest new thing. Take the time to put it in context with what you already do, test the ideas, prototype them in your system and see if they work for you. Don’t force something new into your system, if it has to be forced chances are it will negatively impact the whole system. Look for connections, look outside your area of expertise, have someone else look at the problem; a different perspective or opinion can help. Make yourself better, not by copying ideas, by blindly accepting them, by immediately embracing them, or summarily rejecting them. Step back, take a broader perspective, use the filter of your experiences or lean on someone who has had experiences to lend advice or perspective. Then and only then decide.
Recognize when the emperor has no clothes and say something. Be willing to ask the obvious question- Have you tried this? Does it work? How did you measure the training effect? When looking at a source of information evaluate their body of work. What have they really done? Get beyond the hype and promotion and get to the substance. Innovation is not constantly changing your ideas and approach to training, that is confusion. Innovation and change are constant and necessary, but it must be change with a purpose and goal. It is more than thinking outside the box, it is connecting boxes that are seemingly disconnected. It is being willing to look at the world with new eyes; in fact looking at things with a childlike perspective might be best. Above all define yourself, have specific measurable goals and act on those goals. Believe in yourself, if you don’t know one else will.