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  • Natasha Harvey

The Importance of Learning Agility

I wanted to share some tips to excel at learning from experience and to succeed in better navigating new and difficult situations, summarised from an article by the Centre for Creative Leadership.

1. Seek out new and more diverse experiences that broaden your skills and perspective.

  • Step outside your comfort zone and take on a new challenge that scares you.

  • Ask yourself 2 questions: What’s holding me back from trying something new and different? If these constraints weren’t in place, how would I approach this situation differently?

  • Don’t get stuck on first solutions. For each problem you face, challenge yourself to come up with new solutions, even if seemingly tried and trusted ones exist. If you’re typically data-driven, seek out stories or go get some hands-on, action-driven insight.

2. Take an active approach to making sense of new challenges. Be curious and willing to experiment. Ask “Why?” “How? and “Why not?

  • Actively listen to others, engage different senses, and use your emotions to gain understanding, insight, and meaning from the experience.

  • When you find yourself feeling stressed, pause and take a moment to consider what’s really required.

3. Internalise Experiences and Lessons Learned.

  • Ask for feedback and be open to criticism. Find someone who you trust to give you open and honest feedback and avoid defensiveness.

  • Reflect, both alone and with others. Learning occurs when you take the time to reflect, to shift your thinking beyond what happened to ask why things happened the way they did. Talk about what’s currently working well and what isn’t — or debrief what’s already happened.

4. Adapt and Apply those learnings to navigate new and challenging situations.

  • Learn to rely on your intuition. When faced with something new, look for similarities between the situation and things you’ve done in the past. Draw on these similarities to frame the new challenges.

  • Don’t overthink. Under pressure, you may feel the urge to get things done quickly. Ironically, consciously searching your mind for solutions closes us off to the wisdom of others and our own experience.


If you'd like some help to navigate new or difficult situations, get in touch!

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