I recently read an interesting article from Inc.com by Jessica Stillman entitled "
Here's Einstein's Advice to His Son on How to Accelerate Learning".
It caught my eye because I am currently reading the book "Thank You for Being Late" by Thomas L. Friedman. Friedman, a three time recipient of the Pulitzer Prize for his work with the New York Times and author of six bestselling books, writes about the three biggest influences in society today; technology, globalization and climate change. According to Freidman, these three forces are transforming the workplace, politics, geopolitics, ethics and community.
The real issue is not the incredible speed at which these influences are changing, but our ability to keep up. Our ability as leaders to keep up, to make decisions fast, to make mistakes fast and be able to change direction fast will be the determinants of success.
This means the speed of learning has to change too. Friedman, a Baby Boomer himself, talks about a time when your education got you your job for life. In today's fast paced world, an education might get you your first job, but you will most likely need to learn something entirely new to get your second job. Learning must be accelerated if we are to keep up with change.
But even more important than the speed of all this is the anxiety it produces. From now on, leaders have to be keenly aware of the anxiety their people are facing when trying to keep up with how fast things are changing.
Back to Einstein... what was his message to his son?
"Mainly play the things on the piano which please you, even if the teacher does not assign those. That is the way to learn the most, that when you are doing something with such enjoyment that you don't notice that the time passes. I am sometimes so wrapped up in my work that I forget about the noon meal."
Learn to do what you love, and love what you do.