Knowledge versus Data

 In Delivery, Entrepreneur, Featured Media, Learning from Luminaries, Luminary, Mindset, News, Philosopher, The Winning Voice

My long standing view is this.

You don’t learn from your experience. You learn from intelligent reflection on your experience.

In his Essays and Aphorisms German philosopher and author Arthur Schopenhauer shares the following quotation on the  power of intelligent reflection…

“You may accumulate a vast amount of knowledge but it will be of far less value to you than a much smaller amount if you have not thought it over for yourself; because only through ordering what you know by comparing every truth with every other truth can you take complete possession of your knowledge and get it into your power.”

Along the theme ordering what you know, in a famous speech in the 1990s, businessman, investor, and philanthropist Charlie Munger summed up the approach to practical wisdom through understanding mental models by saying:

“Well, the first rule is that you can’t really know anything if you just remember isolated facts and try and bang ’em back. If the facts don’t hang together on a latticework of theory, you don’t have them in a usable form. You’ve got to have models in your head. And you’ve got to array your experience both vicarious and direct on this latticework of models.

You may have noticed students who just try to remember and pound back what is remembered. Well, they fail in school and in life. You’ve got to hang experience on a latticework of models in your head.”.

Own the Conversation

Implementation idea: 

In the next seven days write/draw up a mental model, diagram et al of one area of your work. If might be your model of stakeholder management, or managing up or, on prospecting for more business et al.

Doing this will help you organise your thoughts on a latticework of models in your head.

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