12. Scholar (From The Learn Family)
Every age has its own outlook. It is especially good at seeing certain truths and especially liable to make certain mistakes. We all therefore need the books that will correct the characteristic mistakes of our own period and that means the old books.”
C.S. Lewis from God in the Dock
Scholars are compelled to discover and acquire knowledge. Teacher, scientist, explorer, historian, anthropologist, theologian…all are examples of scholars. Those with the gift of learning open new worlds for us. These perpetual students remind us who we are and how we relate to our world. They help us celebrate the fascination of life.
They love to be immersed in the school of life, books, tapes, classes and people. This quest is their fountain of youth. As long as they keep learning, they feel alive. They regard learning as a never-ending journey, and the process of learning and understanding is exciting to them. Scholars love to learn, not only the things they have to learn, but any and all things. As perpetual students, they constantly find new intellectual challenges.
To ever-hungry Scholars, knowledge is like a cruise ship buffet. There are so many wonderful dishes to try! They read about anything and everything, and they can discuss myriad subjects with anyone they meet. And they find everyone interesting because they learn from them. Scholars can digest huge amounts of information and can actually learn for others. They are knowledge boosters…walking, talking resources for other people…human encyclopedias.
One of the coaches at Providence, Jodi, had a voracious appetite for learning. She became the reference librarian for the coaching department because she gathered a vast amount of coaching knowledge and information and shared it with the other coaches. She made them better by her own desire to learn. As is the way with Scholars, she was compelled to move on to new areas of intellectual and artistic stimulation. She learned and owned her profile, and mustered the courage to move through many roadblocks in her life to pursue next-level growth.
The effectiveness of Scholars can be diluted when they try to learn too much at once because everything interests and intrigues them. They get caught up in academic pursuits and forget about the practical aspects of their subject. This can be frustrating to colleagues, friends and families. They are over-using their minds at the expense of other areas of their lives.
They have to ask, “What can I do with my knowledge to move my business forward? How will this new knowledge improve my life?” These practical applications will help them focus on moving forward in their lives. Scholars must also make sure they constantly learn about their chosen profession. This will prevent the frustration and boredom that goes with repetitive tasks.
There are other questions Scholars need to ask themselves on a daily basis to remain stimulated and vital: “What did I learn today? What can I learn today about being a better manager and better motivator?” For Scholars, no learning equals no vitality. They need to work in environments that encourage their appetite for interesting, diverse learning opportunities.
Anyone with a Learn ability inherently assumes that everyone learns. From my coaching experience, I’ve noted that Learn people become frustrated with the slowness to learn of others. Those with Learn abilities learn from their mistakes readily and efficiently. Because it’s natural for them, they don’t realize that others may not naturally learn as readily or efficiently.
The Learn attribute can show up in a variety of ways: love of discovery, travel, and new experiences; love of solving mysteries, puzzles or problems; and as the desire to learn that which can be of practical use.