“Haven’t you learnt how to ride yet then,” is often said when I say to people I am having a riding lesson. Today I had a lesson as I have every few weeks since I first had my own horse back in 2003. I have been riding for many years but value someone with knowledge watching me and giving additional hints and tips. Even the top riders have regular lessons or training feedback from others.
Why is this important? I started to think that training, learning and developing should be at the heart of everything we do, no matter how young or old we are. As children our whole lives are about learning new things and everything we do comes with knowledge sharing, testing and feedback. So at what point in our lives do many people stop learning?
Really we are all learning new things on a daily basis but we don’t recognise that we are. Things are seeping into our brains without us even knowing. But for some people finding ways to expand knowledge and experience is a top priority and they seek things out. They are the ones that are doing courses, finding training opportunities and are still questioning whether they have all the right skills.
Of course, you can try to avoid learning new things and stick to what you have done before. You can keep doing the same things while the world is moving on and leaving you behind. I believe every communication professional must continually look to develop themselves further. They need to seek feedback, learn about new techniques and find ways to access training.
When I have lessons on my horse I am given feedback about how I am riding, what I need to do to improve. In the same way I need to ensure I have that feedback throughout my working life about the job I am doing. Have I developed some bad habits at work, and how can I improve my work. In short, train, train and train again should be something we do so that we can move further towards being at the top of our game – whatever game that is.