Enact a Learning Mindset for Innovation

Rosalind Brewer

Lesson time 17:56 min

Instilling a learning culture within your organization is vital for innovation. Roz encourages you to stay curious and shares examples from her time as a STEAM student at Spelman College. She discusses how transformative decisions at Walmart helped shape her growth mindset.

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Topics include: STEAM Education Fosters Innovation • Learning From Walmart • Learning From Spelman College • More Lessons From Spelman • Accumulate Learning • Instill a Learning Culture


ROSALIND BREWER: As a lifelong leader and lifelong learner, I think it's important for us to think about, what does it mean to develop in your organization a learning mindset? And when I think of a learning mindset, it is that moment or those moments over time, where you look at your marketplace and say, we're-- it's growing in an area that we're not familiar with. It's new. How do you learn and understand about that? How do you keep your ideas fresh? And sometimes that development comes from self. It's those moments where you say, I'm going to take the time to walk out on the floor and see how the work is really done. And so having that learning mindset actually starts from a moment of curiosity. That curiosity gives you the chance to always be in a learning mode. Because that's what it takes to then start the process of innovation-- is to always be willing to learn something new, understand it better, be curious about the future, and then act upon it. So when I talk about STEAM, STEAM is Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math. And it's all the sciences combined together. A STEAM framework teaches students how to think critically, problem-solve, and use creativity. STEAM prepares students to work in fields that are poised for growth and innovation. So having a scientific background, or being part of STEAM, gives me the ability to think about how to analyze and break down a problem. And for me, it's the keen problem-solving that STEAM brings to bear. And it's that A in Arts that also adds creativity to it, gives you the opportunity to almost do anything, right? Because you're learning critical thinking. You're learning analytics. You are learning creativity and innovation. And I think that opens you up to do so much more. So I highly encourage, whenever I get a chance or opportunity, is to talk about that, and why that's important, and what the possibilities are. And I get excited about that when I think about the students that we get to hire, or the interns that we have at Walgreens, and look at their backgrounds, and understanding, too, that just at Walgreens alone, you have a pharmacist as one of our primary employees. And then, you might have the finance team. So I have to know how to bring the scientific mindset along with the maths mindset, along with those who are marketers. And it's my responsibility to make sure that these really diverse thinkers are able to come together and really grow the company. When I was at Kimberly-Clark, Walmart aggressively pursued me. And I really didn't have a strong knowledge in retail, but I found myself thinking about, what could I contribute at Kimberly-Clark, and what could I learn if I joined Walmart? So I found myself at a decision crossroad. Do I stay where I am as a group president, or take a lower-level position as a VP in a new industry that has more opportunity? I had a fantastic career. I feel like Kimberly-Clark raised me, an...

About the Instructor

After years of helming the ship at some of the country’s most iconic companies, including Walmart, Starbucks, and Walgreens, Rosalind Brewer has forged ahead in her quest to innovate while maintaining deep integrity. Now she’s sharing CEO-level strategies for team leaders of all types. Learn to promote innovation, gain buy-in on projects you believe in, and stand out as the leader you know yourself to be.

Featured Masterclass Instructor

Rosalind Brewer

Fortune 500 CEO Rosalind Brewer has transformed companies like Walmart, Starbucks, and Walgreens— now she’ll teach you how to make an impact at any level.

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