Successful leaders continue to grow and develop on the job.
The willingness and ability to learn throughout one’s career is increasingly important as changing technology, markets and methods require new skills and behaviors. Learning ability influences the extent to which you grow as an individual, as well as how you’re perceived by others.
In fact, over the long term, your current skill-set is of secondary importance to your ability to learn new knowledge, skills and behaviors that will equip you to respond to future challenges.
These are the findings in Learning About Learning Agility, by researchers from the Center for Creative Leadership and Teachers College, Columbia University.
The researchers warn that the behaviors needed to succeed at one management level or in one setting don’t necessarily translate into other levels and found five characteristics of successful leaders.
1. Innovate: Challenge the status quo
By questioning long-held beliefs and breaking down silos between groups, leaders discover new and innovative ways to look at challenges and creatively solve them.
The more diverse your experiences, the broader the perspective you bring to your role and the more capable you’ll be of finding new ways to meet your goals. Experiment with new ideas and endeavor to find the best solution to each problem.
2. Perform: Remain calm in the midst of adversity
Agile learners draw on past experiences to remain calm, present and engaged when they face ambiguous or high-pressure situations. This allows them to tap into more insightful thinking processes – even at times when inspiration may be at its lowest.
Watch for subtle cues to build a better understanding of the problem.
3. Reflect: Take time for reflection