“The minute you decide to stop learning is simultaneous with the moment you become ineffective.”
This quote comes from Ashley Adams from Dollywood who includes this as part of her email signature line. As a trainer, this of course was especially interesting and inspiring to me.
More than going to a class or studying a particular topic, to me this quote is about having an open mind. There are SO many opportunities to take in new information in 2009 that we really have no excuse BUT to keep learning – if we are open to it.
The other day, my wife Linda and I were talking about fingernails. Exciting stuff, I know. The subject of strengthening them came up, and I suggested ping pong balls. After she nearly spit out her coffee from laughing, she asked what the heck I was talking about??
I have a friend who plays classical guitar, and to pluck the strings, they use their fingernails, not a guitar pick. To make sure their nails don’t break and to get a good sound, some people will cut up little pieces of ping pong balls and glue them under their nails on the picking hand (typically the right for right-handed people). A reticent “ah-ha” was uttered, followed by a question about the difference between classical guitar and acoustic guitar.
I explained the nylon vs. steel strings and the type of music played on both. I could tell I wasn’t explaining it well, so I tapped into a brand new educational resource: YouTube. I showed her the video below, and it clicked.
Okay, so YouTube isn’t exactly new, but it does change the way we think about expressing ideas, and yes, training and learning. What I was having trouble getting across in words was now perfectly clear, thanks to an ambitious musician who learned the Mario Bros. theme on classical guitar.
Of course this would have been a flop of an experiment if Linda wasn’t open to learning something new. I’ll bet if you aren’t a guitar player, you just learned something, too. Well done.
Learning = effectiveness. I like that.
Thanks for sharing, Ashley!