What Motivates Lifelong Learners - Deepstash
Creating A Culture Of Learning

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Creating A Culture Of Learning

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Broaden the definition of learning

Broaden the definition of learning

The rapid pace of technological and strategic change reveal the need for workers to engage in lifelong learning.

However, most executives and talent management professionals trying to get their people to learn aren't thinking about what drives real learning, meaning the creation of new knowledge, not just sharing existing knowledge that quickly becomes obsolete. This cause companies to miss opportunities for employees to engage in learning that will help them innovate and keep pace with customers' changing needs.

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Motivation to develop new knowledge

Motivation to develop new knowledge

Simply having employees participate in upskilling programs is not sufficient. These training programs are primarily focused on sharing existing knowledge, whereas developing new knowledge requires greater effort and on-the-job risk-taking. Thus learners need to be more deeply motivated to explore.

But the motivation for learning is often based on fear - fear of losing your job if you don't.

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The passion of the explorer

The passion of the explorer

Research found that passion is a very powerful motivator for learning rather than fear.

The passion of the explorer has three elements:

  • Explorers have a long-term commitment to excel in a specific domain that excites them.
  • They are excited even when they face unexpected challenges. They see these problems as opportunities to learn.
  • When faced with new challenges, explorers long to connect with others who can help them get better answers quickly.

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Dampening passion in employees

Dampening passion in employees

Only 14% of US workers are passionate about learning that relates to their work. However, we all have the potential for this form of passion.

Young children have all the elements required: curiosity, imagination, creativity, and a willingness to take risks and connect with others. But adults have been discouraged from pursuing this kind of learning because traditional institutions require them to be cogs in a machine, following the process manual to the letter without deviation.

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Focus on scalable learning

Focus on scalable learning

In a rapidly changing world, scalable efficiency is becoming increasingly inefficient. It is essential to move from scalable efficiency to scalable learning, where the focus turns from doing routine tasks to helping everyone learn faster.

To do this, we need to redesign our business practices to encourage the passion of the explorer in all our workers. One way is to identify a part of the business with performance issues and encourage employees to address the novel problems.

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