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How open are you to learning new ways of doing old things?


SmartPulse — our weekly nonscientific reader poll in SmartBrief on Leadership — tracks feedback from more than 210,000 business leaders. We run the poll question each week in our e-newsletter.

How open are you to learning new ways of doing old things?

  • Very — I love learning new techniques and approaches: 82%
  • Kind of — I’ll learn a new way to do things if I really need to: 16%
  • Not very — There has to be a compelling reason for me to change: 2%
  • Not at all — Things work just fine the way they are: 1%

Learn something every day. Obviously an audience that reads a newsletter focused on new ideas is going to skew heavily to being learners. I encourage you to take your learning further by doing so in a deliberate way. Set a learning agenda for yourself. Start a journal or spreadsheet to track your learning. It doesn’t have to be complicated. Define the topics you want to learn, sources for learning them (books, blogs, online courses, classroom instruction) as well as people you can learn from (boss, peers, team members, mentors, coaches, etc.). Create a section called “what I learned this week” and reflect on it to document your growth. Creating such a vehicle will not only focus your learning efforts, it’ll motivate you to learn more as you see your progress over time.

Mike Figliuolo is managing director of thoughtLEADERS and the host of the upcoming Executive Insight 16 — a leadership conference being held in New York this November.