DYNA-FORMTIME & BUSINESS MANAGEMENT
A.S.K. and you shall receive.
Part of a presentation to the “Consulting as a Career Option” course participants, (Toronto, Ontario, Canada), March 14, 2001. Developed and presented by Fred Pentney.
We have already dealt
with the A. for attitude, S. for skills, and now to complete the formula,
K is for knowledge. Let’s review the reason for using this acronym. We
want to stimulate a positive shift to action in our thinking processes.
By linking together three separate areas of personal development, we have
created a formula by which to develop a clearer perception and greater
understanding of the world we live in, and consequently the world that
WE create. The topics of attitude, skills and knowledge are inextricably
linked. When we consciously develop bridges between them, we benefit from
the synergy, which is, that the whole (the results) will be greater than
the sum of the parts.
is for knowledge. Objective: how to develop a knowledge base.
Prelude: The phrase "I know" is used by many to circumvent having to listen to someone else explain their perspective on an item. The follow up response to "I know" should be, "Can you do it (demonstrate, explain)?; and if not, will you do it (motivation)?" In other words using "To know" without experience or the ability to explain is an avoidance technique. Check items in your inventory of what you think you know without having actually experienced ordemonstrated how you know something. Here are some of the steps to giving substance to the statement " I know." Give your search for knowledge some structure and eventaully the process will become second nature.
Our goal is to encourage
you to take part in as many activities as possible, and reasonable, to expand
your knowledge base. If there is a current focus in your life, make a list
of the possible activities related to your area of interest. With what could
you get involved that you haven’t already done so? What have other people
in, that field, experienced that you have not? Find out. Define the
various categories, groups, sub groups in your search area and define some
resources. Make your next steps for acquiring knowledge include listing
people who you could talk to. Set a minimum target of how many people you
should talk to about your quest. Call them (see recommendations in last
section) interview them, and exchange information with them. Let them
qualify what you think you know. Be open, listen rather than talk. Sometimes
there is no right or wrong or better or worse, just different.
Asking questions is one of the greatest skills that you can develop to use for learning. As we have all experienced when traveling, it is often necessary to ask more that one person for directions because the information you receive isn’t always accurate. The person you ask may be interested in helping, sincere or even consider themselves an expert, but this does not guarantee the information you need is complete. So you ask another person. You are trying to reduce the probability of error or misinformation. Good questioning will help do this.
Don’t try to qualify everything that you hear. Make notes and reserve judgment until you have more information. Look for the connectivity between new information and what you already know. Going back to our map and destination analogy, we might compare this to discovering that there are many different roads to arrive at the same destination. And, there are many activities to make you journey more enjoyable and informative on the way. Sometimes as a result of what you learn on the way, you might decide to even change your destination or stay longer at the interim points. Life holds many surprises and being open to acquiring knowledge can be a key to discovery.
Tacit knowledge can be obtained by observing and having a sense of how to do things with or without or experiencing the action. We suggest living up to the slogan, ‘Do it.’ Feel it in your bones. Remember the failures in the first few tries. Eventually you want the activity to produce as refined an action as possible. Practice makes perfect. Confidence comes from mastery. Self-esteem from accomplishment provides the stimulus to learn more and take on greater challenges.
How does this procedure
help develop a knowledge base. Think of the term, experience. We all know
of the employers who will not hire people who do not have ‘experience.’
Those companies know the value of experience and will not risk their business
on people who do not have a track record that can be examined. The rejected
person’s response is generally to say, “Well how are you supposed to get
the experience if they won’t hire you?” There’s the challenge. The answer,
create a knowledge base. Become an expert in your field through reading
and practicing your craft, attending seminars, giving free or low cost workshops.
Do volunteer work in your related fields. Work for less pay or perform related
community service. Mentor or coach other people who have less experience
than you do. Seize every opportunity to be part of an activity related to
your field. The activities will give you both academic and the visceral
knowledge that will be filed in your cells, ready to be retrieved on demand.
The knowledge base will not just include facts which you regurgitate. The
facts will be supported by memories of what it felt like to perform an action.
The voice of experience. This voice will have creditability, authority and
|Subject:||Start date:||.||Finish date:|
|1-6 = priority||A. Initial contact focus:||B. Resources referred to:||C. Other persns to contact||D. Attend... events etc.||Notes:.|
|1.John Doe||.Discussed item||.Read...||.Speak to...||.Attend....||.O.K. to call back|
|2.Mary X.||.Discuss item||.||.Speak to..||.||.|
|1.Annual General Meeting||.Attended ....||.Met....||.Literature...||.||.|