"I hate learning with Stars". I knew it was a nugget the moment I heard it and wrote it down. My C-Suite is made up of Admirals and Generals that wear stars, vice the standard C-Suite acronyms. After a meeting between our respective executive leaders, a very sharp co-worker provided this nugget. New information was learned during the meeting and he hated that this news wasn't discovered earlier. This nugget reinforced his commitment to ensuring everything was provided to the boss prior to the meeting and there are no surprises. This commitment to excellence to ensure the boss is fully prepped was a great lesson and the nugget was just what I needed to anchor the learning.
The combination of living life, curiosity and intentional learning opportunities provide a veritable smorgasbord to become better tomorrow than we are today. Awareness of the opportunity to learn from everyone primes our "spidey senses" to collect these nuggets of wisdom wherever they are discovered. These nuggets may come from books, podcasts, formal mentoring discussions or seemingly random sources throughout the day. My mind is more like a steel sieve than a steel trap and I have to document the nuggets as they come or they are gone for eternity.
Hearing a nugget is different than collecting a nugget. I hear much throughout the day but collect only what is important. Collections are made up of those items that we have attributed value and cherish. We regularly admire the beauty, truth, nuance and craftsmanship of our cherished find because it brings much joy. Collections are most appreciated when employed and provided for public display. The beauty of a Stradivarius is fully appreciated when a bow is drawn across the strings, not locked away in a safety deposit box. Just as the leadership nuggets you have collected are not fit for a shelved notebook. The combination of your talents, experience and insight coupled with your collection of nuggets must be applied for the wellbeing of the individuals within your organization. There will never be another you and the world needs your best.
Going Further: What learning opportunity did you miss? How do you collect your leadership nuggets? What are your regular sources for collecting nuggets? How can you position yourself to apply more elements of what you have learned? How are you most encouraged about the growth you have encountered? What are the names of 5 people you lead and how has your leadership influenced them?