Developing a Shared Path of Learning

The phrase, “You can do this!” when offered by a trusted friend at the ideal time can help us put thoughts into actions around our learning. 

My partner Nancy and I always aggressively pursued dental continuing education for many reasons. We were racking up hours, techniques, ideas, travel, and expenses way beyond the norm.

As we went along, I started to notice a disjointedness to my learning. While I was in charge of my path, I missed discussing the journey with others.

Learning How to Learn With Likeminded People

One afternoon, while sitting in a study club meeting with two of my mentors, Rich Green and Jay Anderson, we were discussing our schedule and next meeting. Jay looked at me, winked, and said, “You can do this!” He meant that he thought I could organize a similar study group.

That was an interesting thought. The idea of gathering people in my network and developing a shared path of learning was attractive to me. Here were my next steps: 

  • I spent some time clarifying in my mind exactly what I was looking for.
  • I had coffee, lunch, or a drink with about a dozen of my peers to see what they were interested in and whether our goals meshed.
  • I gathered interested people together to “meet and greet” and develop a shared vision, direction, responsibilities, and tentative schedules.
  • I lined up facilitators and we were off.

The benefit to me was a local community of likeminded peers bolstered by the significant input they gave about the program. I learned more not only about dentistry but also about working with small groups. There was plenty of downtime with many of my dental heroes.

Of course, there are always nitty gritty aspects of creating a new study club. But those of us on the Pankey Learning Group team stand ready to help you with the process because, “You can do it too!”

How do you make sure your CE learning is deep rather than surface? 

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