My LinkedIn profile notes that “Learn–Share–Impact” is my personal motto. In this blog, I describe what that means to me.
First, I’m using the word “motto” in the sense Merriam-Webster’s second definition:
A short expression of a guiding principle.
The motto is not intended as linear in the sense of always starting with Learn and proceeding to Share and closing with Impact—although, this is a frequent path, as I give two examples for in my closing below. Nor is the intent circular in the sense of the Plan–Do–Check–Act (PDCA) from Lean methodology. Rather, my mental framing is triangular with bi-directional information flow between each headline:
What I aspire to is:
- using learning as an opportunity to open my mind to new possibilities or to learn new skills, i.e. to create a personal impact
- using my learning as a call to action to share that learning with others
- using sharing as an opportunity to create personal and organizational impact. For example:
- “What I shared created an opening for positive change within the organization.”
- “I feel good about myself because I shared my time/knowledge/wealth with others.”
- using sharing as an opportunity to learn, i.e.
Docendo discimus, “by teaching we learn”
- using Impact as an opportunity for reflective learning. For example:
- “Was the impact the one desired?”
- “What worked well?”
- “What didn’t work so well?”, and
- “What, if anything, should I/we do differently next time?”
- using impact as a call to action to share the story as in a case study used for business development, or to inspire others.
I close with two concrete examples, that happen to follow the Learn–Share–Impact sequence:
- Learn customer needs and wants; Share this learning with the Development team; together create a positive Impact for the customer, and for the company.
- Learn a new-to-me concept or piece of breaking industry news. Share with others that might benefit, and in so doing create a positive Impact for the receiver. For example, during my career sabbatical, I shared my own learning and discoveries via frequent Tweets and a Mega Resource List.
For further research, what are some memorable personal mottos that others use? Do you have one to share—either your own or a guiding light that someone else uses?