The enormous amount of change requires an
almost equal speed in learning. Changes are in so many areas like new
technologies, new government guidelines, global markets or social
media/networking. Also it is crucial to not only check your competition and
your customers, but also noncustomers (if you are interested in creating blue
oceans…). Fortunately there is so much knowledge available on or via the
However you need time as well as a
willingness to learn! Most executives are so busy that they don’t plan any
‘learning time’. Firefighting keeps them away from working on the business.
Somewhere there is an inner voice which says “you should learn ..” but that
voice rarely wins. To silence that voice some buy books. I have been in many rooms of senior
manager and they all have a bookcase in it. But most of these books are not
read…….. Maybe they might even think that they don’t need to learn, as they
are already up to date. Well that might be true for your own company, but
certainly not so in a larger perspective. For instance, there are many great
books (John Kotter) and researches available about change management. But still
are most change initiatives not producing the required results. Why? Because
they don’t know about this knowledge and change in the old way, the way things
get done here.
Therefore I do think it is crucial that
executives see learning time just as important as any other business commitment
And there should be a new, frequent modus of learning/teaching available
(instead of the one-off executive education programs), where they can ongoing
learn the latest findings and know-how from experts, academics and research.
This should be planned for at least half a day each month. Also a proven method
like a mastermind group could be very useful for corporate execs, not only for
entrepreneurs and business owners.
Innovation by definition means doing
something new, either in your business model, processes or services. To do the
right new thing you need to learn. Applying what you have learned is the only
way to be innovative. If you want to create new markets, than read the book
about the Blue Ocean Strategy, learn and apply the methods provided. Only then
your innovation can be successful.
To cope with today’s and tomorrows
challenges senior managers should become enthusiastic about ongoing learning
(and change limiting beliefs that learning is only what you do at school).
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