b-school, Henley, MBA, Personal, Thoughts

Learning in a context of growing (mental ramblings of a saturday morning)

Finally I’ve come to the end of the Managing People and Performance and Managing Processes, Systems and Projects modules. There’s still a lot to do to finish my assignment and to prepare the exam but I’ve reviewed more than a thousand pages, commented them and grown through them.

I can’t help beckoning here one of my favourite ideas: Ackoff’s spectrum of learning.

This time in a different form that I found at the end of my MPSP module:


Seen in a personal development context, the transition to the upper levels is what really matters. In fact, being able to study and work at the same time and being privileged to be in a post surrounded with so many different people and that much visibility, has given me the chance to see in practice what I was learning from theory.

It wasn’t the first time, for instance, that I was studying human resources. Yet this time I have understood so many things that, at first, I didn’t even knew I needed to know. That’s the key.

There are the things you know that you know, some of them you think you know and you really don’t know, and then there are the things you know you don’t know. Whilst some of those things you may already know, at least not formally but in a tacit way, the most dangerous things are those that you don’t know you don’t know.

And reviewing my learning journey I see that this time I have opened my mind to many new things, sometimes with sound difficulty and effort, but those things had previously crossed in front of me inadvertently, without my eye catching them. This time I did take a sneak peek at them and understood the motives behind so many theories. Then the pieces started to match.

Because sometimes even bad examples can make you learn more than good ones. But it’s essential that you have the chance to witness and experiment. And I’m so lucky to do so. I really feel I’ve grown a lot during the last months and I’ve got so many people to thank for it (some of them wouldn’t even suspect). Mr. Mintzberg would be proud.

And let’s not forget Henley too 🙂 Who would have thought I’d be MBAing myself to exhaustion and then having fun too? That I’d really enjoy reading even those papers that I could easily have dismissed as too academic or simply impractical?

An engineer’s mind is so dangerous despising things too complicated or trying to simplify things when there’s so much to learn from details, from subtle changes.

When you overcome those limitations, when you’re worked through so many data and information, understood all that knowledge, you’re ready for a further step, no longer bounded as an engineer or an economist, but in your way to fulfil yourself, on road to achieve you full potential as a person.


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