leadership and learning

The best leaders are constant learners is the subject of a recent post in the Harvard Business Review, written by Kenneth Mikkelsen and myself. This is resonating with many readers who realize that the network era is changing the nature of all organizational relationships.

As we attempt to transition into a networked creative economy, we need leaders who promote learning and who master fast, relevant, and autonomous learning themselves. There is no other way to address the wicked problems facing us. If work is learning and learning is the work, then leadership should be all about enabling learning. In a recent Deloitte study, Global Human Capital Trends 2015, 85% of the respondents cited learning as being either important or very important. Yet, according to the study, more companies than ever report they are unprepared to address this challenge.

Leadership today is not about being the most important node in the network, it is about making the network stronger. This was also the topic of my closing keynote at the International Conference on Open & Distance Education, in South Africa yesterday. As ICDE participant Modiehi Rammutloa noted, “connecting with people is not really a problem, sustaining the network is always a challenge”. Sustaining the network, and making it more resilient, is the work of appointed and emergent leaders today.



2 Responses to “leadership and learning”

  1. Nollind Whachell

    Great article Harold. I actually found it this morning and started reading it without realizing you had written it. When it got to the second part talking about PKM, I was shocked that your name wasn’t mentioned as the originator of it. So I came to your website but only to find you had actually written it! 🙂 Well done. Nice to see HBR recognizing you and your work.


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