Balancing Learning and Executing

(Some kind folks on Twitter gave me some topics to blog about. This is one of them! Thanks, Jon Ambach!)

Jon and I agree that professionals are like sharks: If you're not growing, you're not living.

There exists a natural tension. How do you determine how much time to spend on learning?

I think the highest ROI from professional learning is when you focus it on your current business challenges. If you have trouble hiring, then learn on that. If you have no customers, then concentrate on that. And so on.

I have seen "learning for learning's sake" to be a lower return on investment. So, I advocate this position to maximize the utility of professional development by only spending enough learning as needed for your problems.

Otherwise, spend almost all of your time doing. It's more fun anyway.

Michael Girdley