Sunday, June 7, 2009

What do you do you don't know?

Leaders are learners...I am sure John Maxwell or Jay Strack have said that a million times to people but it is true. If you want to lead you better strive to learn. I am amazed at how many people I meet in leadership who are not passionate about learning and discovery. If you run into those kind of people know their leadership at some point will be limited. Here is hope for all of us who are striving to learn, read, process, think, WHATEVER you want to call it. Read this idea from Seth Godin's blog the other day...
If you're in a meeting with smart people and they start discussing a term or concept you don't understand, what do you do?

Do you know what recombinant DNA is? Analytics? Chapter 7? Fair use? RSS? The Long Tail?

If smart people in your industry are talking about an issue you don't know cold, it's very important that you don't just sit there and nod your head sagely. I think there are two constructive paths. The first is to ask. "Wait, I was with you until a second ago. What does that mean?" You'll be amazed at how smart and engaging this makes you seem if you say it at the right time.

The second approach is to write it down and not go to bed that night until you know the topic better than the person who brought it up. How else, precisely, are you going to become one of the smart people?
Just a great reminder that we never arrive when it comes to knowledge! It is OK to ask for explanation! It is OK to get online and figure a new concept out! It is OK to order that book from Amazon! It is not OK to become passive in our search for knowledge! What is not OK is to stop learning and trust everyone else to know the answers.

No comments:

Post a Comment