Lessons Learnt

Brief Description (including a definition if possible)

The formulation of lessons is the collection, validation, consolidation and finally documentation of experiences, developments, hints, mistakes and risks found during a project. Drawing lessons learnt makes sense at the end of any project, activity and work phase. Doing so not only gives credit to the efforts made it also leads to a valuable selection of information that can be useful in the planning and preparation of new endeavours. The analysis of a series of lessons learnt in a sequence of projects can yield ideas for improving the project management in an organization in general. Lessons learnt are drawn first and foremost at an individual level. In a team these (often diametrically different) individual lessons can be consolidated into lessons learnt of the team. Likewise lessons learnt of various teams can be consolidated and made useful for the whole organization.

History (if applicable)

When to use

How to use

How to go about it
  1. Clarify a) for what area lessons learnt are to be drawn, b) who (else) could have an interest in these lessons.
  2. Delineate the system boundaries (project, area of activity, action-learning).
  3. Then formulate guiding questions corresponding to the above.
  4. Collect (individual) answers to these questions and any other spontaneous idea.
  5. Consolidate individual lessons into shared lessons (team, organization).
  6. Describe the lessons learnt (and the surrounding setting) in an attractive and well-structured way
  7. Make lessons learnt accessible to all interested persons.
(Source: SDC Learning&Networking)

Tips and Lessons Learnt

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Examples & Stories

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“The more one has been involved in an exercise, the more you feel like learning lessons. In my view, learning lessons is a natural human reflex. The amazing thing is to share in a team, what (often different) lessons we have learnt based on a common experience and to learn common lessons.”
Geri Siegfried, SDC
(Source: SDC Learning&Networking)

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