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Learning from Experience by Brian Chernett

Brian Chernett

Brian Chernett

In business, especially in the Board Room, people have less time for formal academic or classroom learning and achieve most of their learning through experience. Learning from your own experience often involves making mistakes because it is through getting things wrong that we learn the strongest, most enduring lessons.

The disadvantage of learning only from your own experience is that it can take a long time to learn and some important lessons may never get learned until they matter a lot. You can read books, of course, and go on seminars and courses. They all contribute.

At The Academy for Chief Executives, we believe in learning from the experience of others in a safe environment where it is possible to admit to gaps in your knowledge and to potentially embarrassing or sensitive business issues. Our CEO Groups, Directors and Entrepreneurs Forums are intended to be places where you can meet regularly and learn from Speakers, Experienced business people and your peers around the table. We call it Experiential Business Learning.

Experiential Business Learning is literally learning through experience and by doing and it is aimed at busy business leaders who haven’t the time to learn academically and prefer to spend a limited amount of time to obtain the maximum results.

Learning is the acquisition of knowledge or skills AND their practical application. Acquisition comes from the experience of others delivered through expert speaker session, individual business mentoring, group issues sessions, articles and books. Application is achieved by putting ideas from the sessions into action and adapting them for your own business success. Many business leaders tell us that they find that putting just one or two ideas from each monthly Academy Group session into action is easy to manage and, over a few months, can add up to a major improvement in their personal performance and that of their businesses.

Paul Adlam, Managing Director of Phoenix Ventilation and Engineering and a founder member of The Academy for Chief Executives’(ACE) Surrey CEO Forum group told us “I like the way that The Academy brings other like minded people together to learn. As an MD it’s easy to send your people on courses but never to address your own personal development. Many MDs have had no real business education. As an ACE member I learn from the speakers, I learn from other group members and sometimes I learn from myself. I give other people advice but then stand back and think – ‘why don’t I do that?’”

The Academy for Chief Executives runs groups that provide Experiential Business Learning. They offer an opportunity to explore your business challenges and to come up with new and better ways to do business. The feedback from our members is that it works. Learning comes from many sources, as Paul Adlam explains. Speakers, Chairmen and other Group members all contribute to the opportunity to learn, as does giving advice to others that also can be applied to your own situation.

As Founder of The Academy, I’ve been responsible for finding Group Chairs who can facilitate and grow their groups whilst also running my own group. I find that it enables me to continue my own learning and to keep current with issues and approaches in business today.

Today’s Business Leaders can’t just depend on the knowledge and skills that got them to the top, they also need to acquire new knowledge and skills to stay there. Experiential Business Learning is a very effective way of doing that.

Brian Chernett is founder of The Academy for Chief Executives (ACE) – He has 43 years’ experience as managing director of private and public companies, including subsidiaries of Booker Bros McConnell, the Landmark Group, and several other major companies. Find out more at
The Academy community provides a great place to build your leadership skills and learn more about motivating and developing your people, and how to focus the top team for the good of your company. As the leading providers of experiential learning, the purpose of the Academy is to inspire leaders to achieve their dreams by sharing and learning from real life experiences.

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