Monday 11 July 2011

How To Get A Real Education

This is a great article from the Wall Street Journal from April I thought I'd blog about. It's by Dilbert (Scott Adams) so that's gotta be worth a laugh! Dilbert is wickedly funny and inevitability scathing. He does always make sense as his wit is not purely observational. It changes perspectives which is more fundamental.This article is brilliant:

It talks about people in school who are not academically gifted but have the kind of intelligence that you need to succeed in business. (Book smarts v street smarts) When people are extremely bright you often can't put them in charge of anything, but they are invaluable team members and often gifted specialists.

Sometimes people can surprise you, as having an aptitude for business is not always easy to spot. Many of them are hard to spot until they get started doing things on their own. I really like his idea of teaching people to "fail as a process". When we do new things they tend not to work up to 9/10 times. This should be seen as ok and necessary. Our egos get in the way when things fail as if it only happened to us and us alone, no way!!

As a Leadership Coach am overwhelmed by the similarity in thinking processes between people. we tend to process in very similar ways, our experiences may inform how we do a task or handle a situation and then the behaviour becomes personalised. we have so much more in common than separates us. As U2 rightly point out we are one but not the same! One of the great decisions I made when I started Coaching was to not take me or my mistakes too seriously (nobody else did!) If I put my energies into understanding hoe to do better next time then the rest was not just in the past but a vital part of my learning. The pay off is great...I recover quicker and get back on track renewed and refreshed that I'd figured out something new and have mastered it. A great feeling!

Alvin Toffler, the famous American writer said "The illiterate of the 21st Century are not those who can't read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn and relearn". The one thing the "B" students of the world know is HOW to learn and how to change. That's why they're in charge and will be in the future. We need more than simple cognition and left brain ability to be successful. Sure they get you an entry ticket but they won't win you the game. That requires a different mindset completely. Hope you enjoy the article as much as I did and as always be delighted to hear your views