Unlearning (Not just semantics) LO9802

Fri, 6 Sep 1996 18:48:56 -0400

In a message dated 96-08-30 (LO9632) Keith writes:

> Cherry Vanderbeke <CKV@wang.co.nz> captures the essence of this topic:
> "I said I'd taught him to whistle, not that he had learned to whistle"
> in that this topic is one of semantics....Unlearning means changing from
>what we were doing (even though it is a non-word). Let's start discussing
>"unprogressing" next....
> Our semantics have us confusing training with learning,
> and techniques with knowledge,
> and habit with paradigm ...
> but let's not carry on with the semantics debate.


I'm not so sure that this is just semantics. In fact, I think that the
differences between training and learning, techniques and knowledge, etc.,
are very important. Understanding where in the process of change an
individual is at any given moment will help make any intervention more
effective. Perhaps the person doesn't recognize that a problem exists, or
misdiagnoses the problem, or knows what the problem is but doesn't know
how to handle it, or knows how to handle it but can't pull it off in
Depending on the nature of the "learning-problem" different techniques
would be best for addressing it.

> Change will require the individual to decide that change is finally
>needed. This is the "unfreezing" step which involves them accepting that
>something better for them may result from their action. At that point new
>knowledge or habit can be installed because they are open to it. Then
>repeated practice and affirmation can make it into the new
> Habit
> Paradigm
> Technique
> depending on our context.
> So the essence of this discussion might centre on what it is that
>constitutes the impetus for the change to happpen. To cause this unfreezing
>take take place amoung the INDIVIDUALS that make up any organization?

I think you make a good point: The starting point is the individual's
openness to see the need for change. However, the other steps (such as
practice) are important, as well. The major difference I see is the sense
of working together that agreeing on the need to change engenders in
contrast to the sense of struggle when we don't have that kind of agreed
upon agenda.

-Jeff (BrooksJeff@AOL.com)



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