Managers learn the most when they take a four-pronged approach. Of the four most commonly used “learning tactics” — feeling, action, thinking and accessing others — people typically employ only one or two, thus limiting their learning and eventually their performance.
To improve your on-the-job learning, identify which tactics you use most often and then make a conscious decision to try new ways of learning. The more you flex your learning muscles, the quicker you’ll be at absorbing information, developing new skills, and adapting to change.
- Feeling Tactics. Learn through uncertainty and challenge. Acknowledge the impact of your feelings on what you do and trust what your gut is telling you. Recognize when worry or fear is causing you to avoid a challenge. Consider others’ feelings as well.
- Action Tactics. Learn by doing. Confront a challenge, hands on, and figure it out as you go along. Don’t get bogged down in process or data gathering. Consider options quickly, come to a decision, meet deadlines.
- Thinking Tactics. Learn by working things out on your own. Think about past experiences and draw on lessons learned. Imagine the future and think through scenarios. Gather information from books and reports, seeking to know the facts.
- Accessing Others. Learn by watching and working with others. Use your observational skills to your advantage. Seek advice, examples, support or instruction from people who have met a challenge similar to your own. Take a formal course or program.
Detailed article at: Learning Tactics: Versatility Leads to Success