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Four characteristics of learning leaders

Four characteristics of learning leaders | Cultural Trendz | Scoop.it

by Stewart Hase, Heutagogy of Community Practice

Writing is always a learning experience for me. It forces greater clarity. In addition, the tranquility of the unique Australian bush setting in which I am currently sitting, miles from anywhere, provides a perfect environment for learning. I’ve been working on a chapter for our new forthcoming book (from Amazon in September) called ‘A Practical Guide to Self-Determined Learning: Experiences from the Field’.

It’s an edited work where lots of people share their experiences of using heutagogy in a variety of contexts. It should be fun and, hopefully, useful to people wanting to try something a bit different in their ‘classrooms’. I got so excited while writing the chapter that I thought I’d share some of its content with you. In this day and age there is no need to be patient, which suits me, as patience is not a strong point. And I might get some comments back to help me refine the chapter before it goes to air.

A number of insightful writers have suggested the skills that people need in order to cope with the 21st century. One of my favourites that appears to summarise all of them is from Jackie Gerstein who has put together a neat pictorial of these skills. See also Tony Wanger’s work, which Jackie acknowledges.

The skills she has identified are: effective oral and written communication; collaboration across networks; agility and adaptability; grit; resilience; empathy and global stewardship; vision; self-regulation; hope and optimism; curiosity and imagination; initiative and entrepreneurialism; and critical thinking and problem solving.

Some of the implications of self-determined learning are:

*  involve the learner in designing their own learning content and process as a partner;
*  make the curriculum process flexible so that new questions and understanding can be explored as new neuronal pathways are explored;
*  individualize learning as much as possible;
*  use social media to network learners;
*  provide flexible or negotiated assessment;
*  enable the learner to contextualize concepts, knowledge and new understanding;
*  provide lots of resources and enable the learner to explore essential content;
*  experiment and research;
*  base practice on the latest science;
*  engage learners in collaborative learning;
*  differentiate between knowledge and skill acquisition (competencies) and deep learning;
*  recognize the importance of informal learning and that we only need to enable it rather than control it;
*  have confidence in the learner;
*  be on top of the subject area so you can be a resource;
*  and recognize that teaching can become a block to learning

So, what of the skills needed by learning leaders, given the abilities we should foster in our learners and the rather more learner-centric approach prescribed by self-determined learning?

At the outset, I think we need to get rid of the terms teach and teacher from our lexicon and start talking about the ‘learning leader’. It immediately changes the focus from teacher-centred to learner-centred approaches. So, I think what we used to call teaching is really leadership and the broad abilities are similar whether or not you are leading students or leading people in an organisation.

4 Characteristics Of Learning Leaders

1. Ability to deal with ambiguity

    Low need for control
    Openness to Experience (one of the Big 5 personality traits)
    Moderate perfectionism
    High Stability (low anxiety)
    Project management skills
    Ability to use social media
    Optimism

2. The capacity to foster engagement

    An understanding of how to motivate others
    Ability to foster a shared purpose and vision
    An understanding of human needs
    Interpersonal effectiveness
    Ability to self-regulate
    Empathy

3. The capacity to learn

    Ability to research and learn
    Being thoroughly on top of one’s subject area
    Wide and accessible networks
    Able to share with others
    Knowledge management skills
    The ability to foster collaborative learning

4. The ability to use open systems thinking

    The capacity to scan the external environment
    Able to foster participative democracy/collaboration decision-making and process
    Able to actively diffuse power
    Capacity to work in a team
    Ongoing internal and external analysis of effectiveness (continuous improvement)

 


Via Skip Zalneraitis, Suvi Salo, Ivon Prefontaine
Vilma Bonilla's insight:

I love this analysis of a learning leader! It is spot on.  ~ V.B.

 

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Ivon Prefontaine's curator insight, July 7, 7:25 AM

Peter Vaill suggested learning and leading are intertwined. Teaching is about learning and leading being intertwined with it.

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Smart collaboration: The growth of the collaborative enterprise

Smart collaboration: The growth of the collaborative enterprise | Cultural Trendz | Scoop.it

We are immersed in a “new economy” in which has begun to predominate more  non-conventional work relationships, and where effective collaboration is consolidating itself as a key point. In his book Sustaining the New Economy: Work, Family, and Community in the Information Age, Martín Carnoy draws the foundation of the scene of work relationships in the “new economy” with the comment: “Work is not disappearing but rather it is suffering a profound change. The two key elements of the transformation are the flexibility of the work process and the interconnection in company networks and the individuals inside those companies.”


But let’s go a little deeper into the core concept of the “new economy”. While many academics and economists have tried to define it, it’s interesting to note David Neumark’s point of view in his article Employment Relationships in the New Economy where in place of finding a definition of the new economy, he explores its consequences and analyses what the new economy produces as “new”.

According to his point of view, what is novel are the consequences that exist in the nature of work relationships. He indicates that in the new economy, the employer/employee work relationship has changed substantially. Employees don’t stay with one company in their professional career. Instead, one of the keys to guaranteeing employment and income security for new employees is to make sure that they include different competences in order to change from one job to the next.

On the other hand,  he also indicates that corporations are also changing a one handed smaller nuclear job, that compliments with a strong punctual job that has the necessary skills in the right moment. In other works, social and economic changes from the last quarter of century have underlined the necessity of organizations in order to have more flexibility in their employment systems. The fast evolution of technology, the prices in the product markets and the financial restructuring of corporations in capital markets has drawn each time more the idea of the “flexible corporation”.

Here is where the Co-culture or collaboration culture, has a key role and where coworking plays a key role as a motor of change and an ecosystem for innovation. We can define coworking as “an innovative way of working that allows various individual professionals from distinct sectors to share the same workspace, promoting collaboration, working in a community space and multidisciplinary area, and networking.”

But in the CoWorking Spain Conference, the round table in which I had the pleasure to participate in, next to Albert Cañigüeral and Libby Garret, we explored if the model of coworking can be the key to rapid growth in the collaborative enterprise. It represents an opportunity to change the organizational model and construct the new ecosystem for corporate innovation, where the TIC and enterprise network are fostering and fomenting even more this collaboration and interaction between individuals, with the objective to fight a common good, whether it’s a project or greater knowledge.

But for co-creation of this skill they combine the two experiences: the collective and the collaborative. If for some reason human intelligence is characterized as collective, since we are social beings and we learn new knowledge from interacting with other humans. The intelligence has always been collective and oriented to productivity. However, the collaborative intelligence occupies itself with problems that individual people experience and the distinct interpretations from experts are critical for the resolution of problems. The objective is to learn a trade or increase the knowledge of all the members in the group, as shared in the article “Cerebros Unidos” (United Brains) published recently in La Vanguardia.

In short, this new environment marked by knowledge, TIC and the enterprise network, draws us new understandings and new employees and professional profiles. These “new occupations” demand a lot more mastery of certain skills: emphasis falls on social competence and collaborative methodologies. And extending more over to the impact of TIC, the collaborative enterprise is actually being born demanding a series of positions and competences like: the capacity to make decisions independently, flexibility to work in any place and at any moment with any person, and the capacity of organization. These are the basics of Smart Collaboration.

    Ignasi Alcalde (@ignasialcalde) graduated from the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya in Spain with a degree in Multimedia. He also hold a Master’s degree from UOC in Information and Knowledge of Society. He is a consultant at IA and consulting lecturer at UOC. He shares his reflections about collaborative work on his blog and his twitter feed.


Via Kenneth Mikkelsen, Ivon Prefontaine
Vilma Bonilla's insight:

I am such a proponent of cross-functional collaboration and learning by doing. You will gain better results by fostering teamwork, trust, and allowing employees to learn from each other.

#OrganizationalLearning #Training

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Ivon Prefontaine's curator insight, October 8, 2013 4:10 PM

Are we immersed in a new economy? Or is it an evolution of capitalism?

Andrea Rossi's curator insight, October 11, 2013 1:48 AM

"The two key elements of the transformation are the flexibility of the work process and the interconnection in company networks and the individuals inside those companies"

Stephen Dale's curator insight, October 11, 2013 8:21 AM

From the article:


The collaborative enterprise is actually being born demanding a series of positions and competences like: the capacity to make decisions independently, flexibility to work in any place and at any moment with any person, and the capacity of organization. These are the basics of Smart Collaboration.

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What is the most important trait a leader must cultivate?

What is the most important trait a leader must cultivate? | Cultural Trendz | Scoop.it

The following answers are provided by the Young Entrepreneur Council, an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs.

1. Communicating your passion

Aaron SchwartzGreat leaders make sure that their team is aligned and “rowing in the same direction.” While you may have passion for the company’s mission, you won’t succeed unless you can create a team of believers. Practice communicating your message until it resonates. — Aaron Schwartz, Modify Watches

2. Leading through influence

Most leaders lead using their position of power. However, getting compliance never sticks; leading through influence impacts behavior on a long-term basis. Learn how to connect with people so they do something because it’s important to the company’s success. This only comes if they like you. It’s a hard pill to swallow, but it’s the truth! — Raoul Davis, Ascendant Group

3. Trusting your intuition

Very few people quiet their thoughts and listen to their intuition. As an entrepreneur, your mind can drive you crazy because often times, there are too many variables to make a logical decision. If you work to develop your intuition and gut instinct, the answers will come to you without all the noise. — Matt Wilson, Under30Experiences

4. Showing empathy

Matt EhrlichmanLeadership hinges upon influence, and the best way to gain influence is for people to feel like you truly understand their unique perspective and needs. Once people feel heard and understood, they’re much more likely to take your advice and direction to heart. The act of placing yourself in your team members’ shoes helps you make better decisions, and it earns people’s respect in the long run. — Matt Ehrlichman, Porch

5. Persevering through challenges

Startups are hard. Building a business is hard. Being able to persevere through challenges, hearing “no,” losing customers and losing money is essential. It is important to cultivate perseverance in yourself and your team. — Adam Lieb, Duxter

6. Being addicted to personal growth

When a leader is constantly working on himself, he sets an example for the people who follow him. Learning to be a healthy, balanced and joy-filled leader are top priorities. — Corey Blake, Round Table Companies

7. Trusting your relationships

Few things are as crucial for success in a startup as trust. Trust in the leader, trust within the team, trust in your brand, trust from the audience, etc. Each is intimately tied to the other, and each demands insane focus on staying true and never compromising on the values set forth from day one. — Derek Flanzraich, Greatist

8. Being resilient

Resilience is a key trait that a leader must cultivate. You are going to fail, but you need to take those failures in stride, learn from them and keep moving forward to reach your goals. — Michael Mogill, Crisp Video Group

9. Being able to execute

Passion. Drive. Vision. Salesmanship. These are all important leadership traits, but without the proven ability to execute, they are just gravy. Successful leaders must cultivate the ability to execute. To do so, focus your time and energy on doing the right things at the right times — and get the job done. — David Ehrenberg, Early Growth Financial Services

10. Staying positive

A leader must cultivate and encourage positivity. Nothing kills employee or company morale faster than a negative or condescending player on the team. Staying positive during all the ups and downs of a startup will help those around you see that being positive and happy is a choice you make, not just a condition you find yourself in. — Kim Kaupe, ‘ZinePak

11. Caring about company culture

You are the boss, so everything starts and ends with you. Is everyone miserable? Why? Find out why and how you can work together to fix it. Is everyone happy? As a leader, you have the opportunity to make them even happier! Creating a better culture will help define you as a better leader and help you grow your business. — Joe Apfelbaum, Ajax Union

12. Creating autonomy

The most important trait a leader should cultivate is creating autonomy for others. The value of a true leader is the community that supports him, and he should focus on creating mutually beneficially relationships and creating value for those around him. Autonomy allows others to feel invested and responsible for their work, and it defines their value as part of the team. — Fabian Kaempfer, Chocomize

13. Making difficult decisions

A leader has to make difficult decisions: direction of the company, partnerships, terminations, etc. Most of these decisions are uncomfortable because they strain personal relationships. I believe a leader must be comfortable with these situations. I’ve had to terminate friends and tell friends we can’t work with them. They’re really difficult decisions, but they are the right ones to make. — Liam Martin, Staff.com

14. Knowing how to communicate

It’s essential for leaders to know how to communicate. They need to be able to select goals and explain them completely to the team. When everyone is on the same page, you’ll be more likely to reach those goals. With successful communication, your team will be able to depend on you. A leader who does not know how to communicate will fail. — Heather Huhman, Come Recommended

Vilma Bonilla's insight:

Good insight!

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3 Golden Rules for Remote Work: Advice for Yahoo’s Marissa Mayer

3 Golden Rules for Remote Work: Advice for Yahoo’s Marissa Mayer | Cultural Trendz | Scoop.it

Managing remote workers takes extra effort to forge a team. Here’s how to do it.

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