Assessing Learning Agility with Talentx7

Learning Agility is the willingness and ability to learn the right lessons from experience, and apply those lessons in other new, first-time situations. It's knowing what to do when one doesn’t know what to do.

Learning Agility is increasingly identified by organisations as contributing to the success of their leaders. Used in combination with other attributes (e.g., cognitive ability and relevant personality characteristics), learning agility assess may can help predict leadership effectiveness and high-potential talent. Working Matters offers the Talentx7 tool to assess learning agility.

In addition to overall learning agility, the Talentx7 tool assesses seven sub-elements:

  • Cognitive perspective
  • Interpersonal acumen
  • Change alacrity
  • Drive to excel
  • Environmental mindfulness
  • Feedback responsiveness
  • Self-insight

The tool is able to distinguish between ‘leadership’ and ‘technical and functional management.’ The former is needed in dynamic organisations where change is constant and innovation is vital. Here, leaders must be spontaneous, flexible, risk-taking, and enterprising. In contrast, managers who are primarily planful, detailed, conscientious, and structured add value in limited contexts, such as technical and functional roles – and even then only when there is little change and the status quo rarely moves.

The Talentx7 report provides easily understood dashboard dials to understand where one stands on each aspect and overall. A swatch to the right indicates learning agility (the greater the number, the stronger the agility), whereas to the left indicates a functional or technical orientation. If the swatch enters the red zone on either side, it indicates too much – that is, a potential derailer.

Output from the report can be used in both selection (used as part of a selection programme, not in isolation) and development (yes, learning agility can be developed, but it takes some extra willingness, time, and conscious effort).

Contact us about using Talentx7.

Interested in knowing more about the predictive validity of learning agility? Here’s an interesting review of the construct by the man behind both Talentx7, Ken DeMeuse: Learning Agility: Beyond the Hype


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