Having a broad understanding of the concepts behind learning and education is important when it comes to your ongoing development as a coach and trainer, to help self-identify areas you need to refine and develop in order to continue improving.
Explicit - learning WHAT information you need to recall/regurgitate/reference
Implicit - HOW to implement that information in a meaningful way for your clients
Tacit - WHY that application of that information works, or doesn’t work based on context
While there’s no one area that’s more important than another, it is important to follow the order from the surface to deep dive. Dive deep too early and you won’t have the context or knowledge to critically analyse what’s happening.
Explicit (months) - books, courses, podcasts, articles, studies etc.
Implicit (years) - trial and error, learning best practice from peer groups, case studies, constructive analysis of your work, self-reflection
Tacit (decades) - experience, seeking out mentors, dialogue with other coaches
It’s easy to get caught up on the tip of the iceberg, especially in the age of social media and instant information, where there’s a trend to unconsciously regurgitate phrases and ideas with no context of having applied it. BUT if your coaching decisions are driven only by recalling what you’ve heard others say, or what you see others do - without understanding the HOW and the WHY, you’ll struggle to progress over the long term, forever confined to the tip of the iceberg.
“…if your coaching decisions are driven only by recalling what you’ve heard others say, or what you see others do - without understanding the HOW and the WHY, you’ll struggle to progress over the long term, forever confined to the tip of the iceberg.”
A great analogy to demonstrate this is that of an apprentice chef who learns to prepare meals from a fixed menu - they get REALLY good at preparing a set menu of meals. They can recall these processes in great detail and make them sound incredibly complex and impressive to those who know nothing about cooking.
But they lack the ability to innovate and create their own meals, with no ‘why’ or understanding of how to cook and prepare a variety of ingredients and understanding the interplay between various flavours, preparation and cooking methods.
Without this deeper understanding, they also fundamentally lack the ability to troubleshoot, as they have huge blindspots and gaps in knowledge that need to be filled.
“We believe that having access to more information produces more knowledge, which results in more wisdom. But, if anything, the opposite is true - more and more information without the proper context and interpretation only muddles our understanding of the world rather than enriching it” - Maria Popova
Inside the Integrated Performance