… the HR Minion. Because even minions have opinions. And giggles.

All the right moves

When I was a little girl I took ballet and gymnastics. I have the adorable pictures of me in a tutu to prove it too. So you would think that with all the time i spent dancing and learning balance I would have a modicum of grace as an adult. Yeah, not so much. I’m constantly running into stuff, tripping, dropping things, etc. Graceful, I am not. But I still love dancing and think I have a good sense of movement, even if i have no balance. In fact, I often think of taking a dance class (not ballet, that ship has sailed) or starting up Shotokan Karate again. Think dancing doesn’t translate into martial arts? Tell that to Michelle Yeoh who was a dancer with no formal martial arts training until she started starring in Hong Kong Action movies.

It’s no big revelation that initial training and interest will only take you so far or that the things you learn in life are only useful if you keep using them. The skills you learned 5, 10, or even 15 years ago may have been helpful then, but after so much time, how useful are they to you now? Sure, some residual benefits of knowledge may remain, like my sense of movement, but I certainly wouldn’t say I “know Ballet”. I don’t even remember the basics or most of the position names anymore. Not too mention that things change, even in such a traditional art form such as Ballet. In some ways, with my current level of knowledge, it’s like I never did it at all.

So what does this have to do with anything? Well, I’ve seen too many professionals who think that because they mastered a process, concept, or skill years ago when they were “back in the trenches” of their field, that it is beneath their notice now. They don’t stay current on trends, new information, and especially on technology. It’s not that they couldn’t learn it now if they tried, they just don’t see the point. But just like if I put on ballet shoes and tried to dance a scene from The Nutcracker I would fail miserably, they would also fail if they tried to do now, what they used to do then. It doesn’t matter if you are out of the trenches, a real leader knows the challenges their people face and continue to face. If you truly want to call yourself a knowledgeable professional in your field, much less a leader, you can’t rely on information you learned years ago to back up that claim. You owe it to yourself and your company to keep learning, growing, and challenging yourself.

So strap on those dancing shoes, open yourself up to learning, and be sure to stretch. I almost pulled a muscle the last time I tried to do the splits. I swear I used to be more flexible…

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