Life is a process of learning. From birth the process begins as we learn to eat, talk, walk, etc etc. If you really think about it you will realize that the process never stops. It is ongoing as we grow, complete our education and begin our career.
The first steps in our career lay the foundation stone for future success. This important change in life can lead to a future successful career if a person adopts, continuous learning daily in order
to constantly increase knowledge. Instead of being hesitant, come forward and ask for help when something is not understood, learn how to use the tools and any software provided, observe senior colleagues and constantly be in a receptive mode to expand knowledge and gain exposure and experience in your new job.
However, it is commonly seen that new, highly qualified employees come into the job with the mindset that they “know it all” and that they don’t need to learn anything more. With it, they also expect instantaneous success and growth in the organization.
Little do they realize, that in the fast paced and ever changing business world of today in order to be successful and grow, you need to adapt continuous learning as a personal strategy. The level of accelerating change in today’s business world is making current information and know-how obsolete at a faster and faster rate. Those days are gone when one learned a skill and it served one for a period of time or even in some cases a lifetime. Nowadays, the only constant is change itself.
To keep up with the changing scenario on a personal level, one needs to focus on ones skills by improving them and also increasing ones general knowledge. While on a professional level it is important that one is aware of the changing environment, business world and new technology and developments that are taking place.
So, in order to grow in our personal lives as well as our jobs, we need to keep on honing our skills and learning, continuously. The more knowledge and skills we acquire, the better we will be able to perform and the more our reputation will grow for being a high flier and having potential for higher positions. We will also be able to contribute more to our team and employers.
Well known business author and speaker Tom Peters, calls this process “towering competence” and through this you continue to learn and polish your skills and capabilities to the point where they become highly regarded and sought after by your colleagues and peers.
The question which may come to mind is – Where do I start ?
It is important to begin by evaluating yourself, obtaining feedback form peers and colleagues and identifying any areas you need to focus on and develop. Based on your assessment you may start to :
- Identify any training programs you may need to attend
- Focus on keeping your professional knowledge upto date via newspapers, magazines, internet, by reading latest about, current affairs, new developments, articles etc.
- Improve language skills by expanding your vocabulary or learning new languages which may support you in your future career development and new opportunities.
Apart from these, also focus on developing your personal interests, hobbies etc as these do form a part of your overall personality projection and how you come across with your family, friends and colleagues.
It is generally recommended that you spend from half an hour to an hour daily focusing on yourself and your skills. That is very little investment compared to the returns.
By now, you may have realized the importance of continuous learning as a key factor in your success in life and career. Not only that, as know-how starts to become obsolete faster and faster in this ever changing world, it will soon become a matter of surviving.