We recently put a question to the CMI community: How important to your career is un-learning and being open to change your mind? The idea was prompted by Monica Chadha, a member of CMI’s President’s Advisory Board. Monica is an advocate of the idea of “un-learning” in a world of relentless change.
The responses were striking. More than 1,000 people answered. Almost three quarters (73%) of respondents agreed that being open to changing your mind was very important, and another 24% believed it was somewhat important.
While some people question the term “un-learning” (“unlearning is actually just learning”, said one respondent), the idea of being open to change got the big thumbs-up. One respondent said he’d changed sector because there was nothing else to learn. “I am now a complete novice again and I like it.”
What is this telling us? That the old world of leaders who own the truth and knowledge is definitely past. In an environment of relentless technological and societal change, many norms are only norms for a short period. The role of the leader is, increasingly, to be adaptable, to be alert to and respond to change. And to have the courage to change their mind.
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