We are all familiar with learning as an activity. Starting with learning the alphabet and numbers, we move on to learn more through formal education. After a satisfying education and subsequent qualification, we find jobs and that’s when learning slows down for the average worker.
Is it just about getting and keeping a job or building a career? When does learning become important? Why should we focus on continuous learning?
Job or Career?
A job is an activity that is done in exchange for money. A career is following a lifelong ambition. A job is important to earn money and pay the bills, a career is a job extended to fulfill a personal goal. I look at job as an activity that helps the employer make money and a career enhances personal achievement.
The bridge between a job and career is learning. A job can be done with some on the job training but to get that extra edge at work, learning is critical.
Learning is a must throughout our work life. The environment is changing and we should be able to react to the environment quickly. Our behavior must change accordingly so that we as well as the organizations we work for can thrive and survive in this competitive world.
An organization normally relies on the training and development department to prepare its employees during uncertain times. The training department focuses on making people what they should be by teaching them what to do. It’s about the organization.
On the other hand, learning is about the person. It’s about developing the person from inside-out. An individual drives his/her own development for further growth. This is done by the individual through work, experience and developing skills beyond work. This develops an individual’s unique potential and ability. Whilst training merely transfers skills to be used for the benefit of the organization, learning is initiated by an individual for personal growth and progress. Individuals who develop themselves are noticed and fast tracked at their workplace.
Learning is critical
If you are in the race to make your mark to fulfill your personal goals and get ahead of the pack, learning becomes important.
Work life is now competitive and challenging. If you want to move ahead at work then learning is not a “choice”, but a “necessity”. Continuous learning is thus an integral part in the life of a working professional. So, what do you want?