Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve shared insights on how you can continue to learn throughout your leadership journey. Previously, I shared ways to grow your knowledge base through reading books, journals, and professional research articles. Next, I discussed the value of conference attendance as another way to continue learning.
This week’s tip is learning through unconventional methods. What’s that you say? Yep, you can learn from some vehicles you probably already use on a daily basis. In this post, I’ll go over these nontraditional methods of learning. Remember, learning is learning, regardless of the medium! So let’s dig into it…
One of my first suggestions will likely come as no surprise. Outside of audiobooks, it’s my favorite way to obtain knowledge, podcasts! Whether it’s learning how to manage your finances to home decorating, there’s a podcast for virtually every topic. With such a vast library, there’s bound to be a podcast worth subscribing to that will add to your knowledge base. To find it, you can google search your topic within podcasts (ex: personal finance podcasts). Top podcasts will appear that you can then peruse. Then you can go to your podcast app to check out the content and reviews. I suggest you listen to one or two to make sure it’s a fit before you subscribe. And then, boom!! Brand new knowledge uploading regularly into your device without any further effort on your part. Now, you just need to digest it and leverage the content as appropriate.
One pro tip: Check out the podcast’s website for show notes to archive details that were shared on the show. This will give you something to reference later as you’ll likely forget some of the resources shared.
Another way to gather new information is through blogs. Now you may be thinking, “of course she would say that, she writes a blog!!” No, that’s not why I’m offering this suggestion. To be honest, I’ve been reading blogs long before even considering writing one of my own. For me, blogs provide easily digestible information that helps me learn something quickly. I also look for blogs that are credible and provide accurate information. Initially, this takes a bit of due diligence on my part (a few Google searches, a scan of social media to read their posts, comments, etc.). But once I’ve screened them, I’ll subscribe to receive their blogs regularly. I also use the Bloglovin’ app to collect my go-to blogs in one place.
Social media is another surprising way to learn. While many people use these platforms for personal exchanges, sites such as LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram may be full of new information in your field. Following experts in your field, professional organizations, research journals, etc. could lead to new insights. Depending on the platform, the details will be offered in bite-size pieces, with a link provided for more details. On platforms such as LinkedIn, the information is available within the post for you to access. So, while I’m not suggesting you completely refocus your social media moments on professional growth, sprinkling some opportunities to learn could be an easy way to gain new insights.
Regardless of what method you decide to try, the bottom line is that it’s vitally important that as someone who will be considered a subject matter expert and will be looked to for answers by those you lead or the organization as a whole you are equipped with up to date information. So, pick up a book, a laptop, or your mobile device and get to learning!!
Before you go, share this article with a colleague who could use some learning inspiration!