Joys and tears in new learning, management trainer says


I’ve done a lot of learning over the years, that has included formal tertiary studies as well as informal skills acquisitions. I’ve known for a while that there are always frustrations mixed with the joys of learning, but until relatively recently, I didn’t realise there were a number of sequential stages to be gone through in the learning process. I’ve found too, that the stages can’t be skipped, however much we’d like to do so. So what are the stages? At the beginning, we are unconsciously incompetent (we don’t know what we don’t know, but we do know we don’t know); then we move to being consciously incompetent, where we discover the extent of what we don’t know. This stage is followed by a slide into conscious competence, when our new skills and knowledge have come together and we are deliberate in what we do and how we do it. Then, finally, the day we get to without realising it – we are unconsciously competent – and know what to do, how to do it, to the right degree and consistency. And to think that we go through this process time and time again, throughout our life – without realising it. Amazing!

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