Lifelong learning

Hoteliers are expected to learn and understand many disciplines, and we are expected to continue learning new things all the time while on the job. 

For example, about 15 years ago “revenue” and “management” were mutually exclusive terms in our industry. Today, having a director of revenue management on the executive committee is commonplace, and general managers must understand and know how to apply revenue-management techniques. It seems being a “lifelong learner” could be a critical element of improving the health and success of your operation. 

In their book “Hard Facts, Dangerous Half-Truths and Total Nonsense,” authors Jeffrey Pfeffer and Robert Sutton write:

“Organizations need people who think quickly and well when they work alone on problems with known correct answers — that’s what IQ measures. But having people who know the limits of their knowledge, who ask for help when they need it, and are tenacious about teaching and helping colleagues is probably more important for making constant improvements in an organization, technical system or body of knowledge. This attitude enables people to act on their present knowledge while doubting what they know, so they can do things now, but keep learning along the way. Wise people realize that all knowledge is flawed, that the only way to keep getting better at anything is to act on what you know now, and to keep updating.”

Some takeaways on lifelong learning:

  • Understand the limits of and be humble about your knowledge. 
  • Ask for and accept help from others. 
  • Give help. 
  • And ask lots of questions along the way.

What learning tips can you share?