Be Effective by Being Selective

Do you suffer from random acts of learning? We love to learn, but have recently made a commitment to a new practice. We are focusing on targeted acts of learning versus random ones!
Before you pick a conference, book or webinar, it’s important to know WHAT you are targeting. Content counts, and not all topics will create the same level of advancement.

  1. FOCUS – What is your purposeful goal? Is there a gap in your knowledge or skills? Do you want to learn cutting-edge approaches to leadership? Do you want to go back to the basics and get grounded in proven communication practices? Start with your learning outcome and work your way backward. If you want to improve your communication effectiveness, maybe you focus on your storytelling skills.
  2. SELECT – Identify the topic you want to learn more about. Then find the six most widely acclaimed books, the top three experts and the most highly rated class in the topic. Spend a specific amount of time (three to six months) focused on learning that topic or skill from the best of the best. It’s easy to get excited about lots of different topics and end up reading aimlessly. If you try to learn many different things at once, it isn’t nearly as impactful as rapidly advancing your knowledge in a specific area, with the best resources, in a focused timeframe.

In order to acquire knowledge and skills you have many options. We’ve mentioned books, experts and classes as approaches for learning. Other beneficial learning resources include a coach or mentor (not the same!) or joining a community where you can learn from peers.
Quit learning randomly by deciding where you need to focus, and which resources support your acquisition of the knowledge and skills needed to achieve your goals.
 

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