Monday, 5 March 2012


The three levels of Lesson-Learning


Three Little BirdsThere are three levels to which Lesson-learning is commonly applied.

The first is to reactively capture lessons at the end of projects, and document them so that others can learn. This is level 1.

The second is to reactively capture lessons at the end of projects, document them, and as a result make changes to company procedures and practices so that the lessons are embedded into practice. This is level 2.

The third is to proactively hunt lessons from wherever they can be found, and make changes to company procedures and practices so that the lessons are embedded into practice. This is level 3.

I have only really come across level 3 in the military.  For example, see this quote from
Lieutenant-General Paul Newton

The key is to ‘hunt’ not ‘gather’ lessons, apply them rigorously—and only when you have made a change have you really learned a lesson. And it applies to everyone … It is Whole Army business.
That's the ultimate level - to hunt lessons, apply them rigorously, and make it "whole company business." How many of us have got that far?

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