, , ,

My top 3 takeaways from Degreed LENS 2019

I was in Austin recently for the Degreed LENS conference. It’s now officially the only learning conference I go to every year, for two reasons:

1)  It’s small (i.e. intimate).

2)  It attracts outstanding learning leaders. 

Because of this, the quality of conversation is beyond anything you can find at any of the bigger conferences. 

I had three main takeaways from the week that I want to share with you: the map is not the territory, know your desired outcome, and invest in the people you have. 

The map is not the territory

As soon as you think you know what your audience wants, you’ve probably lost them. 

That’s because people change their minds. Emotions and moods evolve. You have to constantly be listening to update your understanding of what your audience wants. 

The smartest people embrace their ignorance. They are intimately familiar with the limitations of their models, and they are excited when they discover that they’re wrong about something.

In creating a learning culture to support a business, it is crucial to get out there and experience first hand what people are doing. This is true for anything in life.



Know your desired outcome

The analogy given was parenting. If you know how you want your kids to be as they grow up, your decisions can be made around these goals. You don’t need as many rules. 

I know in my own businesses if I’m not active in setting aside time to re-evaluate my goals, I’m like a headless chicken charging hard in the wrong direction. 

Knowing the direction you wish to go helps you evaluate the decisions you make to get there. 

Invest in the people you have

This was one of the most pervasive themes of the whole conference: invest in the people you have, rather than go out and buy skills you think you need. 

I think the broader implication here is to help others believe in themselves to realize their potential. 

Give someone an identity and watch them amaze you.

Have you been to any good conferences or meetups recently? 

What takeaways did you have?