Tips to steepen your learning curve
Steepening your learning curve, in today’s fast-moving business world, is extremely important if you wish for your startup to pass the test of time and make sure that in your organization, learning never stops!
Most established businesses, including start-ups, place complete reliance on experience, and while that itself isn’t wrong, they are usually not willing to enquire into and learn about new and innovative ways to carry out their tasks.
This is what eventually renders them outdated and a misfit for the business world that is rapidly changing and ever-evolving. On the other hand, those start-ups that are able to steepen their learning curve are the ones that can keep up with the changing times.
Are you still confused as to the importance of developing and maintaining a steep learning curve at work? Let’s try to help you steepen your learning curve--suppose two start-ups have recently begun their operations in the same product categories.
One works by the traditional methods which they have learned from their past experiences and the other actively attempts to analyze market changes and incorporate new ways that help them achieve the same output in a better, cost-effective, and faster manner.
Which out of the two do you think would survive in this fast-paced business scenario? Yes, the latter, of course! So, now that you know the importance of a steep learning curve in the start-up environment, let’s move to the “How” of it all.
Like any other task, when you sit with yourself and think “Hmm...how do I steepen my learning curve?”, what answer do you come across? The origin of an effective and steep learning curve lies in the preparation stage.
By preparation, we mean to say that your start-up should have a robust governance system and a suitable level of stakeholder input. These, by themselves, would ensure an effective learning curve.
As mentioned before, if you wish to steepen your learning curve, you have to do it right from the beginning.
Tips to steepen your learning curve
Source: Photo by NeONBRAND on Unsplash
Given below are some steps you can take while starting up that can help you achieve the steep learning curve that you want in your business:
- Create a process map for new processes
- Sophisticated process maps, such as the Bullant Filters, help in mapping out the structure of new processes. The Bullant Filters mainly comprises three different filters - demand, capacity, and reliability filters
While starting up, you would mainly need the demand and capacity filters because you would have no prior data with you to use the reliability filter and that’s completely alright. This should be the first step when you wish to steepen your learning curve.
- Identify the pressure points:
During the process of starting up your dream venture, you would have numerous targets in mind, which makes it important to indulge in focused efforts. The demand and capacity filters in the Bullant Filters Process Map can help identify the most important configurations and design a system that would deliver apt results with the resources and environmental factors your start-up would have.
Eventually, you would be able to identify your key areas or “pressure points” and with sufficient and focused efforts on these areas, you can surely steepen your learning curve for the organization.
- Concentrated efforts on resolving special-cause variations
When starting up, you are bound to face downtime that can be caused by numerous factors, such as the fluctuating nature of all processes and systems. This downtime or variations can broadly be classified into two types:
1. Common-cause variations:
These are downtimes that are expected (to a certain degree) and follow a statistical average.
2. Special-cause variations:
This type of downtime has more systemic roots and, therefore, requires more attention than the former type.
For instance, imagine a bag sealer that keeps producing unsealed bags. To resolve this variation, you would either have to reconsider the bag material or the supplier who delivers that material to you.
Either way, once you’re able to resolve the special-cause variation, you would see a tremendous impact on the efficiency and quality of the work as you steepen your learning curve.
- Train your team:
It is imperative that all the members of your team understand the methodology, processes, and systems used in the previous three steps and your business in general. Other activities that are taking place simultaneously, such as product or process testing, validations, and training should also be carried out efficiently so that everyone knows how and where they fit into the organization.
If you follow the tips given above, you would be able to steepen your learning curve in no time and begin your journey in the ever-evolving business sphere!
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Frequently Asked Questions
1. How do you describe a learning curve?
- A learning curve depicts a process where people develop a skill by learning from their mistakes. A steep learning curve involves learning very quickly.
2. What is a good learning curve?
- A good learning curve or a "steep learning curve" means the knowledge in question takes longer to learn; a "shallow learning curve" means it's a quick process.
3. What does it mean to have a high learning curve?
- A steep learning curve means something that is difficult and takes effort to learn, like climbing the steep curve of a mountain.
4. How can I improve my learning curve?
- One's learning curve can be improved by working harder, faster, and bunching your tasks.
5. What are the applications of a learning curve?
- Learning curves are used by businesses in production planning, cost forecasting, and setting delivery schedules, among its other applications.