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A Section from "The Continuous Improvement Development Guide"

Volume 4: Building the Foundation >

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Learn to Learn (Principle)

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Most people take a passive approach to learning. They just absorb lessons rather than try to dive into problems and take wisdom away from failure. To be successful at building a continuous improvement culture, you have to take a different approach to learning.

An organization will not get better unless it learns from its collective mistakes. This implies both individual learning and organizational sharing of knowledge. To complicate the matter, people have three common failure modes in their learning.

The first is that they don’t recognize their gap in knowledge. Basically this means they don’t know what they don’t know.

The second problem is that they don’t acknowledge the gap. If they don’t know something, they tolerate that lack of understanding.

And the final problem is that they don’t know how to go about closing the gaps that they do recognize and care about. That just means they don’t know how to learn effectively.


CI Transformation Principles are the guiding rules that apply to all companies that are trying to make changes. They are similar to natural laws. Learn more about how principles guide your Lean journey in our entry on ‘Principles and Values.’


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