Have you ever had one of those moments, when in a foreign country, you thanked your language teacher for drilling into you those basic phrases? Due to their persistence and your ‘obedience’ you are now able to say one or two key words in the foreign tongue. This is now a lifesaver as it helps you find out how to get to your next destination – phew! This portable thinking is the 8th Habit of mind, the skill of applying past knowledge to solve current situations in a creative way.

Being able to use what we have learnt is helpful, but being able to use this knowledge in new contexts to contribute new perspectives is very powerful.

The first step in being able to reapply knowledge is to be able to confidently articulate it. The old saying, “if you can teach it effectively, you know it!” is great summary of this notion. When we know something really well then we are able to effectively teach it and we can shed new light, discover new options and realise new opportunities.

Here are Thinkers.inq we always encouraging the team to use prior knowledge and shared understanding to create new ways of thinking and doing. A fun way we explored this habit of mind just recently was when we set the challenge of getting from one side of the room to the other without feet touching the floor. The team shared prior ‘floor crossing’ knowledge, collaborated with shared ideas and came up with an innovative solution to solve the problem. All with a good dose of laughter thrown in for good measure, the learning was fantastic. So many new ways of thinking about an old problem presented themselves and our corporate thinking changed us for good.


Our challenge for you today is to never forget how important present learning is and to make the best of every ‘learning’ moment. For in the future, when this knowledge is needed, you will be ready to confidently contribute and make a tremendous impact on the problem. #soworththeeffort