When was the last time someone told you something and you honestly paused and said “hmmm… I didn’t know that.”?

Today’s topic should be a no-brainer, but one of the best things you can do for yourself and for your organization is to be a lifetime learner.

This means that you’ve never arrived at that magical place where you know everything, no matter your experience, knowledge, schooling, or anything else.

There is always something for us to learn.

And as soon as we start to think differently, that’s when trouble comes. Trouble could come in the form of wasted time and energy problem solving an issue because we didn’t want to ask someone else’s opinion.

Or trouble could come from people leaving your organization because they had something to offer but never felt heard by you or others.

Trouble could come from a bad decision or plan or investment that could have been avoided if we had taken the time to open our mind and consider some new information from another source.

And learning can also happen anywhere.

We can learn from things we consume, such as podcasts or blogs or videos.

We can learn from conversations with others at work or home or with friends.

We can learn from those older than us and those younger.

We can learn from the past.

One of the places we often fail to learn is from our mistakes or the mistakes of others. Unfortunately, we’re often too busy beating ourselves up or someone else over a mistake to have time to circle back and learn what could have been done to have possibly avoided it.

In fact, mistakes and failures are one of the best sources for lessons.

Why did it fail this time even though it worked five years ago? Well, the software is different or the personnel changed or there was a new regulation that shifted a key part of the process.

Our brains need that stretching that learning provides. Having that mind that is always willing to learn opens us up to ultimately know so much more than we previously thought we knew.

I mean, look at technology and the way the world is changing all the time. If you aren’t willing to learn, it will begin to pass you by. Or, maybe you’ll find yourself getting frustrated or spending too much time trying to do something an outdated way when there is a new tool or app or service that can do it quicker.

So obviously as a leader you need to start by being a learner yourself and not letting pride stand in the way.

But then you can also help create a culture of learning in your organization as well.

Think about ways that you can help foster a better learning culture.

Sometimes it’s a two way street and you’ll find people who are willing to learn but those they could learn from are either condescending or just not wanting to teach. So that is another area that can be addressed.

Bottom line is that if your whole organization was able to continually be looking to learn and grow, just imagine what you could do with a group like that.

But it starts with you.

So what are you learning today?

If you’ve been enjoying the podcast and haven’t left an Apple Podcasts or iTunes review, I’d love it you’d take a minute to do that. You can head to shawnwashburn.com/apple┬áto take you right there. Thanks for spending some time today to help you and your business thrive.