October 12, 2005

How to absorb the learning of others?

When working in a team under time pressure it is inappropriate to expect that all team members complete all the tasks. Indeed, the whole idea of teams is that tasks can be delegated to members to reduce the burden of work throughout the team.

I find that I learn best when preparing a complete answer. My challenge to myself is to find ways to improve my ability to learn from the learning of others. Is it possible to gain as much about a subject from the learning of another team member than from personal research into a subject?

At the moment, all of the understanding that I gain from others is through dialogue. Perhaps with a space to share files etc, I might be able to understand more by looking at their work. We are using mind maps and I can't access them as mind maps at the moment but this is a technical issue that can be easily solved.

The absence of much discussion within a team situation only serves to limit the learning of others as knowledge is not shared effectively. Perhaps a system in which each team member in turn shares the knowledge that they have gained when completing set tasks at the beginning of a meeting, is appropriate?

I think that I focus on 'sharing the knowledge that I have gained' rather than 'telling others what I have done'. I believe that there is a big difference.

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