• Personal Resonance© is a research forum engaged in transforming findings from proven research studies on learning, training, performance and expertise into practical training solutions and practices to 'accelerate time-to-expertise' of organizations and professionals. Aggressive time-to-market drives organizations to develop complex cognitive skills of their employees at faster pace to beat their competitors. Goal of forum is to find and share the answer to that ‘speed’. The forum is trying to develop a core knowledge-base in four areas by systematically assimilating, analyzing and synthesizing the proven research studies in wide range of disciplines like cognitive sciences, neuroscience, psychology, education, learning and brain science, etc.: 1) Accelerated Workplace Expertise: Proven research-based strategies and methodologies to accelerate expertise of organization as a whole through training and learning. 2) Accelerated Professional Expertise: Science-based resonance techniques to accelerate expertise, peak performance and effectiveness of individuals. 3) Strategic Training Management: Experience-based competitive philosophies and processes to manage large-scale complex learning and knowledge operations to produce proficient workforce. 4) Competitive Instructional Design: Advanced instructional and learning design techniques to deliver higher order complex skills like problem solving, critical thinking, decision making, technical troubleshooting.

Knowledge to Abilities – Are You Differentiating Yourself from the Crowd? (DNA of Mastery Part 1/6)


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Some years back, I got into an interesting discussion with an elderly man- a kind of philosophical discussion. He commented that anyone can be intelligent but few possess wisdom. That was quite a point. From that point onwards, I have been looking at journey of self-assertion and how we view our self on the spectrum of learning. As you engage in continuous learning you keep evolving in your understanding and skill levels and you leap the new levels. The question becomes is where do you stop where you are on this spectrum.

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Here is some insight into this in this Part-1 of the this post which will be published in 6 parts. Do come back or subscribe this to check for subsequent parts.

KNOWLEDGE: Get Competitive Edge By Expanding Your Strategic Knowledge

In simple words “knowledge means what you know”.

When I was young, I was quite curious about driving cars several years back. I gathered quite a bit of information about different models, its features and how different mechanical system operate together to drive a car. Several times I imagined how fuel is getting ignited and how it is generating thrust and then started relating it with pressing of pedal. What I was doing was gathering knowledge.

When you learn ‘something’ new whether it is a new fact or a new skill, focus on acquiring comprehensive knowledge about that ‘something’. Comprehensive knowledge comprises of three types of knowledge – factual, conceptual, procedural and strategic. These different knowledge types are acquired through the processes like understanding, applying, analyzing, synthesizing and evaluating. When you learn a new thing, you start knowing some facts about it (factual knowledge), as you unravel new relationship how things are organized (conceptual knowledge), you get to understand how to apply knowledge or do certain things (procedure knowledge). The real learning is how to use different strategies to make the most of your knowledge (strategic knowledge).

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What it means to you?

  • Research shows that highly successful leaders have highly developed situational and strategic knowledge.  Strategic knowledge is also called knowing about knowledge which is very important for you to develop because this enables you to monitor your learning and able to use different strategies to use knowledge and approach different situations using different strategies.

SKILLS: Acquire & Perfect Your Skills

In simpler words “skill is what you know you can do”.

Skill generally refers to something you can do which is verifiable or demonstrable. As years go by, I got first opportunity to drive. The moment I took the wheel and pressed the pedal, I exactly could relate what it is like pressing the pedal to accelerate the car. I was able to connect my conceptual and factual knowledge was getting connected with procedural knowledge during this practical experience. However, I needed some practice on having a feel on how much pressure on the pedal means how much speed and then how other controls need to be coordinated timely.

The skills are most commonly always considered to something physical or motor related. That’s not completely true. Even the ‘evaluating’ and ‘thinking’ is a skill since it requires practice. While I was driving, I was also evaluating the speed and deciding when to press the brake. This was kicking my higher order thinking even though I was learning the skill.

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What it means to you?

  • Skill acquisition comes with several different approaches to skills. From a user perspective it is commonly believed that skills can be acquired by either or combination of various modes like observing vs. doing vs. feeling vs. thinking.
  • How do you perfect the skill? Well, that comes with practice. Researchers emphasize deliberate practice to excel a skill. By doing it again and again, it builds confidence.
  • However, note that confidence does NOT mean competence. So even if you have mastered a skill, don’t overrate your confidence as competence yet.

ABILITIES: Differentiate Yourself From Crowd with Your Abilities

Let me give you an equation.

KNOWLEDGE + SKILLS = ABILITIES

In simpler words abilities means: You “can” do it. You have been equipped to do it, but we are yet to see the disposition how effectively you do it.”

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For a while, this might contradict the way you have learned to use this term. You might be using this interchangeably to mean several other things. Let me see if I can elaborate with same example. As I started driving and started exerting my knowledge at appropriate points, I started making decisions based on speed, distance, traffic, road conditions and other factors. Demonstrating the driving skill required me to apply some knowledge and concepts like friction and distance before I can stop the car. As I become better at this, someone commented ‘now you are “able” to drive’.  Yes. That’s what the ability means. In world of reality ability refers to total sum of Knowledge and Skill.

What it means to you?

“You are not yet there”. Don’t you hear that very often from your colleagues and managers when you just recently attended a training course and have not quite yet put the learning into action yet?

  • In order to be known for your abilities, you need to make sure you integrate knowledge and skills very well. While you are learning a new skill, you will need to be cautious about how well-rounded and comprehensive knowledge you are acquiring about this skill.
  • Remember to focus on strategic knowledge if you need to stay out of crowd of people having same kind of skills. That’s why “abilities” differentiate people even though they may have ‘supposedly’ acquire similar kind of knowledge and skill from a training course.

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Stay tuned for next part of this post where I will shed some light on what there beyond ability as you travel your journey to Mastery. This post will be published in 6 parts. Do come back or subscribe this to check for subsequent parts.

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Checkout complete presentation @ SlideShare: http://www.slideshare.net/rkattri/knowledge-to-mastery-part-1

Check my pins on this post @ Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/475903885595396671/

About Raman K. Attri

Raman K. Attri is a complex learning strategist, a transformational training consultant and a researcher with over 20 years of experience in engineering, management and technical training. His primary area of focus is to provide strategic directions to organizations in implementing next-generation competitive training strategies. His research interests include complex learning, accelerated expertise and advanced instructional design. He is also the founder of Personal Resonance©, a research forum with a charter to transform proven research studies on accelerated expertise into organizational training practices. His training and learning solutions are strongly founded in system engineering techniques applied to large-scale training programs. Equipped with scientific training methods, he innovated two research-backed complex learning frameworks namely SEAT© (Systems Engineering Approach to Training) and ProBT© (Proficiency Based Training) methodology primarily meant for organizations to accelerate development of complex cognitive skills of their employees systematically at faster rate. He is highly passionate about learning. He holds Professional Doctorate in Corporate Training, MBA in Operations Management and Executive MBA in Customer Relationship Management. Currently he is pursuing another Doctorate degree from Southern Cross University. His personal interests involve writing and painting.
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