Lots of tools exist. The knowledge is likely out there somewhere, maybe even documented. Information is everywhere. There are willing teachers, armed with experience and context and the ability to explain things in a way that can help you learn.
But you have to want to learn. Not just hear. Not just receive information. But learn.
Every day, I hear another story of someone telling me that they need more tools. They need more this or that to do their jobs. They don’t have enough information or training or case studies or data or collateral or something.
There’s no question that there are legitimate holes sometimes in our information systems. And as businesses, we have a responsibility to do our best to equip the people that work with us with the information and tools they need to do their jobs. Accepted.
But what we need are more people with the initiative and the moxie to seek out that information, to improve the information that’s out there, to make the effort to learn it rather than just regurgitate it, to rethink it, even, and to actively pursue and assist with the creation of what’s missing.
Waiting for someone to hand you the instruction manual isn’t interesting. It isn’t ambitious. Hell, it’s pretty close to completely lazy. And it isn’t doing you any favors when it comes to broadening your own skills and expertise and creating value for your customers, your company, or your own career.
Quit looking for a PDF to hand to your boss or a stock slide deck to email to your customer. Quit waiting for someone else to answer all the questions for you so you can just pass the information along. Quit bitching about the blog post that no one has written or the case study that hasn’t been shared. Those are excuses, not legitimate roadblocks.
Roll up your sleeves. Ask smart questions, and listen to the answers. Try something. Create something. Answer the question, or don’t stop until you can at least try. Be accountable for seeking your own knowledge, and give yourself the gift of having a more rich, interesting, diverse and powerful information arsenal right inside your own head.
We need more learners. You can’t change the world waiting for someone else to tell you how.