Focusing On You, Part III

by Nate Hunter

Now, for our third part of the series, we’re going to explore the importance of your continued learning. 

The first two installments of the “Focusing on You” series explored: Positioning yourself as a business partner and also celebrating more of what you want to see. I thank you all for your feedback and I am so truly excited that many of you took the initiative to implement ways to celebrate your team’s efforts! Now, for our third part of the series, we’re going to explore the importance of your continued learning.

Part III: Are You Seeking to Learn?

The most successful people in business and in life are those that are constantly seeking to learn from others. They are secure with themselves in admitting they don’t know everything, and they perpetuate a certain level of curiosity that keeps them on a route to discovery.

Now everyone has their own area of expertise where it comes naturally and easy for them to succeed. To be open to additional learning could be something as simple as understanding what your partners and team members do in their areas of expertise. You don’t have to master it — but familiarizing yourself with their processes will provide a holistic understanding of your business and in turn make you a better partner. It’s also important to have recreational learning for your passion and hobbies outside of your work place.

Having coached hundreds of people throughout my career, it’s unfortunate how many of these folks don’t recognize how self-sabotaging and limiting they are when it comes to their own learning. “I don’t have time.” “I don’t have the resources.” “I don’t have the energy.” Ultimately, in any industry, you must stay relevant with innovation. It’s vital for your career growth and personal development to be spot on with the latest industry developments. You simply must make the time for this, especially since technology has broken all barriers of time and travel. If you feel you don’t have the resources, check if your company offers any form of reimbursement for continued education or conferences that are directly tied to your job role. I am a huge advocate of a company’s responsibility to develop and provide a growing path for its associates who take the initiative. And as for the folks who feel they don’t have the energy for learning? Being engaged, learning new things and exploring new ideas create a healthy sense of well being which, in turn, promotes a natural energy. When you are mentally, emotionally and spiritually engaged — you will always find the energy physically.

Now as you are on the path to continued learning, the next vital step is to share what you’ve learned with your team members. In competitive industries and tough economic climates, some people mistakenly think they are more valuable if they “hoard knowledge”; however, this independent operating style won’t last long in team environments.

So until the next Daly Dish — take the challenge: Make it a point to learn and share something new each day. It doesn’t have to be rocket science; keep it simple and, most importantly, keep it fun. 

— Grace Daly is an industry leader in retail design, construction and facilities, as well as an avid career coach. She is currently the Executive Director of Construction & Facility Conferences for InterFace Conference Group.

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