What do you prefer: Getting smarter or being right?

Being a poor learner is a risk. Not learning means not being able to adapt well to new conditions (“survival of the fittest” – the one who best adapts to the environment survives). Nowadays, this is easy to overlook, because our living environment is fortunately not as deadly as it used to be – but still very risky in a creeping way (see the topic lockdown, digitalization, SMEs…).

A very significant obstacle to learning is bossiness.

Gladly taken as part of a dominant/authoritarian/patriarchal communication culture in which not being right means forfeiting your social status. Often, (openly lived) learning, therefore, becomes a privilege that one only allows oneself again at the CEO level, then ‘one can afford it’. Until then, it often happens behind closed doors.

A dazu-learner deserves the utmost respect,


  • he chooses to be uncomfortable (and get some excitement at the same time),
  • he risks his self-confidence (because he has to be able to live with not being able to do it yet) and
  • accepts dissatisfaction with what has gone before – in order to use it as a power to do something better in the future.

So to all of you who are considering whether you can dare to be a beginner again, I would like to encourage you with this quote (also a good in-office hook, as a nice reminder to yourself and others):

A person should never be afraid to admit that he was wrong because, in other words, it means that he is smarter today than he was yesterday.

Alexander Pope

[Image from Unsplash – many thanks!]

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