Subido por Ana María Palacio Vélez


Thanks to Ron Gross for sharing this piece from his book "Peak Learning: How to
Create Your Own Lifelong Education Program for Personal Enlightenment and
Professional Success."
In the world of work, there is widening recognition of the need to capitalize on
different learning styles within organizations. According to Dudley Lynch, in Your High
Performance Business Brain, "we can use this powerful new way of understanding
people to design better organizations, ... do a more effective and productive job of hiring
and placing people, and to frame our management messages so that they can
penetrate the natural filters of the mind."
That means you should be able to measure how well your learning style fits the tasks
that compose your present job. You should also be able to recognize the styles of
others, which will make for better communications.
Understanding Your Style
In a workshop, we illustrate this by forming a hemispheric circle. All the participants seat
themselves in a semicircle so that each person's position reflects his or her degree of
preference for either the stringer or the grouper style of learning. Those on the left side
of the semicircle prefer to learn in a step-by-step, analytical, systematic way. Those on
the right prefer a holistic, top-down, big-picture approach. Then, we talk about how
these two kinds of people can best explain things to each other or convey new
"Hold on, now," one of the left-side folks will say. "I'd really prefer it if you could start out
by giving me some basic examples of what you're talking about. You seem to be all over
the map instead of starting with first things first."
But the next minute someone from the right side will complain, "Hey, I can't see the
forest for all those trees you're throwing at me. Could we wrench ourselves up out of the
details and get an overview of the subject? What's the point? Where are we headed?"
Often partnerships are profitably forged out of two individuals who complement each
others' styles. In my workshops, we often see two people who work closely together
take seats on opposite ends of the hemispheric circle. In one case, a couple in the
fashion business found themselves in those places. It turned out that one of them was
the idea person and the other, the financial wizard. Together they made a dynamic duo
Creating teams to work together or to solve problems is an important area in which an
awareness of styles can assure greater success. Some highly technical problems call
for team members who all share the same way of processing information, seeking new
facts, interpreting evidence, and coming to conclusions. A narrow fact-finding or
problem-solving assignment, such as determining how to expedite the passage of
orders through the billing department, might be such a situation.
In other situations, however, your success may depend on having the right mix of styles.
You may need one or two people who take the top-down, broad view together with
others who like to work systematically and logically. Creating a plan for the next year's
activities would be a task that could benefit from this mix of approaches.
Recognizing Relationships With Superiors
Another area in which styles of learning and thinking can crucially affect the success of
individuals or organizations is boss-employee relations. This typical situation occurs
every day in business and industry: a supervisor will complain that a new worker can't
seem to learn a routine task. When the suggestion is made that the newcomer might
learn it if shown it move by move, the supervisor — clearly a grouper rather than a
stringer — expresses dismay, exclaiming, "I never give instructions that way. It would be
insulting and patronizing — anyone can pick it up if they really want to."
Such conflict based on differences in style can extend right up to the executive suite. In
their book, Type Talk, management consultants Otto Kroeger and Janet Thuesen tell
how they helped straighten out troubled organizations by analyzing the disparities
among the styles of the managers and executives involved. They even suggest
developing a version of the organization chart in which each of the key individuals is
identified not by his or her title, but by his or her learning style!
Gross, Ronald. "Peak Learning: How to Create Your Own Lifelong Education Program
for Personal Enlightenment and Professional Success." Revised, Subsequent edition,
TarcherPerigee, April 5, 1999.