The importance of learning
‘The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn.’ –Alvin Toffler
[Updated December 2021]
Just saw an interview on the TV with World #3 Surfer Josh Kerr. He’s considered one of the most exciting young surfers on the professional circuit. He was talking about working hard to stay ahead of all the young surfers coming through the ranks. And he said something really interesting:
All my favourite surfers are younger than me.
Kerr watches the videos of the younger surfers to explore new twists, tricks and turns.
I immediately thought, ‘Who are you watching to improve your business?’ Hopefully, it’s not just the big established ones…
*Interview on Nine News, 5 April 2012.
Who is leading the way?
There’s a common joke amongst my colleagues that if you want to learn social media, then ask your son or daughter. It’s not that it’s a funny thing to say, but rather the joke is on us – that we’re not at the forefront of knowledge and best practice in that area. And our siblings and the younger people who are digital natives do it way better than we could imagine.
The critical point here is not so much whether someone is older or younger to learn from. Rather, it’s firstly to keep learning. And secondly, to find the right person to learn from.
For me, one of the greatest learning sources have been the books I’ve read. This comes in two parts. It’s both the read of the books, plus the designing of them as book summaries over at Book Rapper. There’s an old saying that I believe has enormous merit: if you want to truly learn something, teach it. That’s what writing the book summaries was for me. It forced me to go deeper in my understanding of the material because I had to share them for others to use.
What are you doing to learn today?