> Michael raises a very good question. Should we teach people the "Lists"
> from which they must operate or should we lead them to understand the
> concepts that led to the creation of the lists in the first place? This is
> a crucial question for organizational learning, maybe for all learning.
> In some cases we cannot afford to wait for the concepts to be understood
> and must first start with "lists". In an organizational setting we need to
> bring people up to speed quickly so they can contribute effectively to the
> purpose of the enterprise.
>From personal experience teaching, managing, living in other cultures, and
raising children, the following are pretty true:
The best learners are all under 5 (or maybe 10). They learn almost
entirely from doing, not from theory. Try learning to walk from theory.
The best way to learn to speak a language is to speak it. The best way to
learn to live in a culture is to live in it. In both cases, studying
theory AFTER the experience is invariably highly effective. In both
cases, the learner will have already developed their own theories, and
they will be able to compare their own theories to those espoused by
DOING in the absence of theory is anxiety-producing. Being anxious does
not feel particularly good, but it may enhance learning. The most
effectively-learned theories are those developed by one-self, rather than
those given to us.
Despite these examples, I am not espousing any one approach to learning.
All I want to point out is that the most _comfortable_ approach for us as
individuals may not be the most effective.
Rol Fessenden LL Bean, Inc. email@example.com
Learning-org -- An Internet Dialog on Learning Organizations For info: <firstname.lastname@example.org> -or- <http://world.std.com/~lo/>