Rarely the announced goal of seminar day is to know less in the evening than in the beginning of that learning session. I believe many of us would be surprised if the keynote speaker would start a day by listing items which we will find much more difficult to grasp or act on, after the session has ended. Someone might ask that what on earth is this program all about, is the goal here to become wiser or dumber?
Certainly our sincere goal is to move from unknown to known, from unclarity to clarity, from incapability to capability. But what is the road that leads to knowledge? It may not be as straight or smooth journey from unknown to known than what seems to be the typical assumption. It may be bumpy road indeed. In fact, when we are talking about real learning, some and often several bumps are guaranteed.
At the same time there is something positive in negative learning. The symptoms of negative learning seem to relate to real action and to real effort to become better. Symptoms of negative learning are avoidable if we stay in the thinking, planning, dreaming phase. However revolving in those phases seldom create real learning.
*I am thankful to professor Tapio Aittola for the concept of negative learning. At the same time this blog is my interpretation what that concept could mean in organizational life.