At the end of every project, at the passing of major milestones or calendar moments, when things go wrong, we do a wash up, a post mortem, and retro review. Some way of noting the moment and digging for lessons learned. Good and bad. Personal, general, specific, generic.
Lesson learning isn’t a moment-in-time thing though. It starts there, it starts with a candid review of what happened, assessed with humility and without playing defence or running interference. What you find is the subject of the lesson, but the learning part is the active process of absorbing and assimilating the lesson. Of changing how you do things, of adapting the standard operating procedure, of polishing and recognising the good things that pushed your forward and reworking and renewing the weaknesses that held you back and tripped you up.
Skippy strategy: Lesson learning starts with a meeting, but it isn’t the meeting.
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