Chapter 11: Champions of Relearning

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Chapter 11: Champions of Relearning

Learn Unlearn Relearn

future shock relearningAll great campaigns for change involve the slashing and burning of the old and outdated, alongside the introduction and embedding of the new and current. Pathways is no exception.

Legions of Champions now roam the kingdoms of Outland bringing support for the people who fear the change from the old and cannot yet see the benefits of the new. The champions now quench the thirst for answers and bring new wisdom from the chalice of experience.

Education is at the heart of preparing present and future Toastmasters to thrive in the world of Paths, Levels and Projects‘. The champions are the educators!

Alvin Toffler in his book Future Shock (1970) posited that “The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn”. Source: learning re imagined

Relearning Curve

relearningThe process of unlearning and relearning can be strange and awkward. The people of Outland have been comfortable with their ‘traditional’ programs for 90+ years and in the recent past have tolerated and absorbed minor adjustments and changes. They have recognized the need to bring the educational materials into alignment with current professional practice and have welcomed small incremental changes.

Now in this complete restructure, and a new program being implemented around them; bringing a complete change to the way they learn; the fear  of relearning is emerging.

Champions will need all their skills of persuasion to help them relearn together collaboratively. First step is reassure the people that the fundamentals of success in familiar group meetings are still at the forefront of their experiences. Next, encourage them to acknowledge the inevitability of change over the next two years. Finally support them in the transition between the old and the new in a strategic manner. See it as an opportunity not a burden!

An adjustment of attitude is required! Help them to relearn! Help yourself in planning your Path!

What do the experts say about Relearning?

Let’s explore what the Relearning Think Tank experts believe about the process of successful relearning and how we can encourage the Pathways Champions to implement the four essential elements of successful relearning and add some structure to what they are exploring in their chosen Paths! Note the quotes below are from the work of Ashley Spowart, Managing Director of Vanguard Learning, Monash University, Melbourne, Australia.

Ashley Spowart from Vanguard Learning!

Leadership: “The influence of the direct leader on the learner was identified over and over as a critical part of the ability for someone to learn and unlearn“.

The Pathways Champion performs a direct leadership role within their group and their influence as coaches and mentors is powerful – they have generated a relationship of trust through their attitude and support. The champions have a unique opportunity to shape the success of their clubs and their group meetings through direct leadership.

understanding leadership style materialChampions: How will you lead your clubs into the future?

Consider this project as a way of adding a Pathways Framework around what you do.

Required Project:
Understanding your Leadership Style!
Level 1: Effective Coaching Path



Environment – “The organisational attitude towards learning, the physical spaces that are created for learning and the culture of the organisation are all key here”.

The Pathways environment is new and seemingly complex to the uninitiated. Some are yet to be convinced that the change will enhance their enjoyment of the program. However the organisational attitude towards learning remains the same. The vision of Toastmasters – ‘we empower individuals to become more effective communicators and leaders‘ – empowers them to be world leaders in communication and leadership development.

The champion’s role is to support and encourage the people to enter the new environment with them and to discover new learning together. Their Club Mission is: ‘We provide a supportive and positive learning experience in which members are empowered to develop communication and leadership skills, resulting in greater self-confidence and personal growth‘.

successful collaborationAll can make the transition from the old to the new, knowing that the core values remain the same! Work together to build a collaborative team.

Champions: How will you support a positive learning experience into Pathways learning?

Consider this project as a way of adding a Pathways Framework around what you do.

Required Project: Successful Collaboration
Level 3: Team Collaboration Path


Aptitude – “What are the skills and behaviors needed from the learners in order to be able to learn effectively in the first place“.
Complex Problem Solving, Critical Thinking, Creativity, Collaboration, Emotional Intelligence, Judgement & Decision Making, Design Thinking, Cognitive Flexibility.

Each of our club members have these skills in different quantities and qualities, now is the time to uncover those hidden skills among them.

leading your teamUtilize the strengths of the teams of champions and empower them to build new skills among others.

Champions: What can you do to coach and empower others to lead the way into Pathways?

Consider this project as a way of adding a Pathways Framework around what you do.

Required Project: Leading Your Team
Level 4: Leadership Development Path


Purpose – “Finally but possibly most importantly it was strongly identified that the right mindset was needed to be present within the learner in order for learning and unlearning to occur. This was deemed as purpose!

We know from the promotions and stories of the development of Pathways that it was ‘purpose built. The content was designed with the learner in mind at all stages. The restructure was engineered with the assistance of groups of volunteers from the membership of this large education facility.

Teams of Volunteers: Learning Masters, Ambassadors, Chief Ambassadors and Pathways Guides have been instrumental in introducing and implementing this new education program.  Now it is time for the Pathways Champions to take their rightful place among the volunteers who will be critical in the process of ’embedding Pathways’.

manage changeChampions: Do you have the right mindset to help in the relearning process?

What can you do to prepare your club for change?

Consider this project as a way of adding a Pathways Framework around what you do.

Required Project: Manage Change
Level 4: Dynamic Leadership Path

We learn in moments of enjoyment! Ralph Smedley

Segue to Chapter 12: Pathways Guide Return Journey

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