The three primary ways how people learn include: formal training, coaching and informal learning.

However, far too often within business and academia, we tend to fall into one particular mode of learning when designing growth and development strategies for our organizations and employees.

A person’s IQ is equally important as his or her EQ (emotional quotient).

The ability to identify, assess, assimilate, manage and control one’s emotions, and relate to others in an empathetic way is the key to corporate survival and desired results. School, textbooks, teachers and organizations alone cannot teach you this.

Success requires considering multiple approaches throughout your learning journey.

When people complete their education, traditionally through formal learning, many find themselves ill equipped for real-world acumen, because they feel that what they learned yesterday barely applies to what lies ahead.

Radio had acquired 50 million listeners after 38 years. It took TV only 13 years, the Internet 4 years, the iPod 3 years, and Facebook managed to add more than 200 million users in less than one year.

In a time of information overload and Internet ADD, the key to success is to build on your traditional academic qualifications by finding relevant knowledge quickly and at the point of need.

Knowledge is very different from information.

It’s crucial to cut through the information clutter in order to find relevant facts, truths, and principles. It’s important to convert that data into knowledge to bring about meaningful change in the way you approach the world to increase your impact at work. Yet the dilemma is how to do this.

Using the web productively can be a challenge for the untrained, as a multitude of information sources is available. You can go to Twitter to find out what happened in the past few seconds, search Google to find information that the Googlebot found and indexed perhaps months ago, or purchase a book on Amazon to delve even further into understanding a piece of information. However, we lack the efficiency to judge for ourselves what is relevant and meets our needs.

Compressed knowledge bridges the gap between the desire to acquire knowledge in small, easily digestible snippets and to have access to books, journals and academic studies outlining the lessons current business leaders learned.

The good news is that knowledge tools are available everywhere and the cost of these informal learning solutions are substantially lower compared to the cost of formal learning.

getAbstract’s core competency is to seek out information relevant to our clients and to expertly compress it, of course, always with the permission of the original owner of the content – to create a credible, trustworthy summary. This compressed knowledge is available on a robust technological platform that enables users to find, read and share information quickly.

Our platform also allows subscribers to get the salient points of a book in approximately 10 minutes. And if users want to dive deeper into a topic, of course they have the option to buy the book.

When your interest is peaked by, for instance, innovation, but you just happen to be running on a treadmill rather than sitting in front of your computer, what do you do? You can access relevant, compressed knowledge on innovation and other critical business topics, anytime, anywhere.

Our company spends a great deal of time focusing on being an on-demand provider of compressed business knowledge. Access to this knowledge is available through multiple platforms, such as the iPhone, iPad, Android, BlackBerry, Palm, Windows, and more. getAbstract provides knowledge at the point of need.

With more than 1,000 enterprise clients and a total of 10 million subscribers to its comprehensive, on-demand library of more than 8,000 business book summaries, getAbstract provides the tools you need to make more-informed business decisions. In short, what used to be highly complex and cost prohibitive, and take weeks to understand you can now learn in 10 minutes or less.

getAbstract’s knowledge nuggets provide a rich source of inspiration to look at the world differently. And through sharing and collaborating you can strengthen your EQ and become more productive.

According to the 2011 Bersin & Associates report Building a Learning Culture Through Holistic, Environmental Support for On-Demand Learning, organizations with a strong culture of learning simply perform better than those without it. It just stands to reason that your personal motivation to maintain intellectual growth would also provide tremendous net returns.

In short, it’s not just what you read but how much you can consume and retain that will move the knowledge needle forward.


Michel Koopman is the CEO of getAbstract Inc. getAbstract’s mission is to find, expertly compress and provide universal access to critical business knowledge in a format that learners can absorb quickly and easily. This allows our customers to stay current and competitive and to become leaders who can make better decisions.

Today, our solutions include a library of more than 8,000 business book summaries, in text and audio format, which more than 10 million subscribers use, including 20% of the Fortune 500 companies.