After I sent Julias message yesterday, I decided I’d implement it.
I posted the following message in our Basecamp Message Board
@Julia made an interesting suggestion yesterday as she wrote an email for my newsletter.
She suggested using a learning journal as part of a daily report.
Here’s part of what she wrote:
A learning journal is a diary where you write down your thoughts about what you’ve learned for the day and how you feel about it. It’s a studying hack some teachers use to help their students engage with subjects better.
This is how I make mine. I take notes on what I’m learning. I highlight the questions I have about a topic and I research the answer until I get it.
I prefer handwriting my learning journal but to make it easier for them to submit it through email, making a doc file might be better.
This is also going to help your OFS because it forces them to think about what they’ve learned. They’re not just watching a video or following examples. Asking them what they’re feeling about what they’re learned and how much of it they understand makes the learning process more active.
I like this for 2 reasons:
1. Thinking about what you learned throughout the day is a good brain exercise. You guys know I’ve struggled with my brain. Remembering what I did is tough. Journaling has been something I’ve done to help.
2. I would love to know what you’re learning. I don’t care if it’s about work or hobbies or kids or school or…
Me knowing what you’re learning would be good for me to know you better, and good for me to be able to help you grow in your career.
I don’t think you all need to start a learning journal. I also don’t think you need to include something every day about what you learned. But, I’d love to have “What I learned today” be a part of your daily reports sometimes. It would be great for me to know if you’re studying something for work, or if you’re learning about cars, or if you learned a new skill in badminton…
I’ll start it with me right now.
This morning I learned that saying “I like that dress!” to my wife is a lot better for me than saying (snarkily) “What are you wearing?” Now it’s just a matter of implementing this in future conversations…
I don’t know if this will work or not…but I’m trying it.
PS. I have a lot more suggestions for things like this in The Outsourcing Lever. Including the 3 questions I ask my people to answer in their daily reports.