What I Learned This Month – July 2018

To encourage others to learn continuously a leader can role model what this looks like.  A simple way to do this is to follow in the footsteps of Microsoft CEO Satya Nadell – create and share a monthly ‘What I Learned’ video.  I’ve added this practice to my ongoing learning routines, and have created my first monthly video.

My three lessons for July 2018 and associated resources are summarised below.

Strategic Procrastination

I’ve been reading Originals by organisational psychologist, Adam Grant. In chapter 4 of this book and his TED Talk titled ‘The surprising habits of original thinkers,’ he outlines research undertaken by one of his students into the link between procrastination and original thinking.  This research helped me to recognise and improve a pattern in my own creative work where I work on something for a short period, then put it aside and pick it up again closer to the deadline.  I find that in the interim I’ve gained new insights and am able to generate and synthesis ideas into a better quality output.  I can now deliberately use this insight in my creative process.

Working with Experts to Define Skills

I’ve been working on a project to refresh a Capability Map to define the skills required by a Learning and Development professional or function.  I’ve noticed that it can be challenging for people with deep expertise to clearly identify and describe the skills required in their domain.  In the video I describe a questioning technique I used to guide an expert to achieve this.

Impact of Tracking My Time

I’ve started tracking my time using an app called Toggl.  Tracking my time has improved my focus and reduced distractions.  I’ve found Toggl easy and relatively unobtrusive to use.


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