Action Learning in the Military

Business leadership and military leadership share many people development ideas. GE is considered one of the best (if not *the* best) leader developers in corporate America. I enjoyed a recent leadership development podcast on CEO Talk Radio with Noel Tichy.

Noel ran GE’s Crotonville leadership campus and was responsible for incorporating action learning. The idea was to get the students out of the “ivory tower” and into real world situations where they were expected to solve problems, be evaluated and trained after action through a review.

If you have served in the military you know this model all too well. This is how the military teaches leadership and judgment. Noel mentions the influence of military special operations in making this model part of GE’s leadership training.

He also mentions that most learn 80% of what they know by doing. This is how you learn in the military, by doing. Action learning, evaluation and after action review hones leadership skills and refines decision-making experience. Military Leadership to Business Leadership, the connection is clear and it’s one big reason why employers seek to hire military.

Bobby Whitehouse

Image courtesy velvettangerine