“First you copy, Then Understand, Finally you master. Once you master then innovation inevitably happens.”
As a working professional you are expected to walk into the door already being a master of the work you do. This is tough because mastery of a process and work may take years.
I see people just fake-it. Quickly learning by drowning then that one swimming-stroke saved them, it’s all they ever use.
For example, a new manager who has to set-goals, develop plans and delegate tasks BUT was never taught a method for how to do this. It was just assumed that once you become a manager you know these things. The manager freaks out (learning by drowning) YELLS at someone, poorly delegates the work. The project gets completed, however it is late, over budget and the below quality.
The project got-done, no-one supplied this manager with any feedback. What he did must have worked, right?
Any learning process goes through 3 phases
- 1. Rote Copying – Mimicking and doing exactly what the directions, LOP, Policies Procedure, teacher, trainer, etc… does. There is no room for interpretation just following the steps.
- 2. Surface Understanding – following the Rote Copying you begin to create an understanding for how to get things done. The learning becomes more than just copying. You are now understanding why and when and how to do the steps.
- 3. Personal Mastery – following Surface Understanding you enter the personal mastery phase. The learning becomes innate, you do the work without much thought about the details. In this phase you have mastered the basics so much that you begin to create your own new, unique and useful solutions to the work. Innovation comes from mastery.
Now your turn;
How did you learn to become so competent at your current work? Did you go through these 3 phases? How might we develop a standard for developing managers and teams using Rote Copying; Surface Understanding; Personal Mastery?
michael cardus is create-learning
image by by jinterwas