The Downside of WOINA

WOINA – What’s Old Is New Again

The Downside is: missing the Lessons Learned From Past Experiences.

Things change. Names of things change.

New people learn the new names of things – and then don’t learn immediately – what some of the key lessons learned from the past are under the previous name(s).

Key is: Under what conditions does something work, and under what conditions does something not work?

This leads to reinventing the wheel, repeating the mistakes of the past, etc. And that’s so wasteful. In people’s time and financial resources.

I wish that when newer names are created and shared – sometimes because 1) something has evolved a little or a lot – or 2) some “marketing thinking” is trying to create a differentiation where none exists – that the prior names/labels would be shared – and of course, what’s different – besides the name.

And of course, I really wouldn’t expect that from 2) Marketing Thinking – where the name has been evolved but little else has evolved from the prior thing/name/label.

It just makes it more difficult for new people coming into a field – to learn those past lessons learned – and that only happens once they’ve figured out that some new name/label is the same – or close enough to some prior name/label.

This has been a complaint in L&D since long before it became known as L&D in the early 1990s and was referred to as T&D.

See what I mean?

So – Has Anything Changed?

The only thing that has really changed IMO – since 1979 when I got into the profession – is the digital tools that we use to do our work, and then to deploy our work.

Which is the pretty much same in every function of an enterprise, of almost every type.

Listen here:


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