Skip to main content

Continue to Learn as You Work

Successful professionals today can learn a lot from the personal habits of Benjamin Franklin, one of the most successful people in American history. According to, throughout his life, Franklin had a custom of setting aside an hour a day for intentional learning. Today, professionals refer to this practice as the “5-hour rule.” For those who seek maximum career growth, following Franklin’s example can create a tremendous return on the investment over a lifetime.

Types of Learning on the Job

The 5-hour rule can apply to many different types of learning on the job, not just to attending a class for an hour a day. Professionals can spend time each day working on hard skills like mastering a computer program, learning to code, practicing a foreign language or learning accounting. They can also improve soft skills through deliberate study and practice — skills like communication, conflict management and project organization.

Learning while working a full-time job can mean an hour each day reading books on business or self-improvement or even listening to audiobooks or podcasts while commuting or exercising. For those interested in more specific career growth, the benefits of formal education in an online degree program, such as an MBA, offer immediate and long-lasting personal and professional development.

Increase Productivity in the Long Term

Following the 5-hour rule takes discipline and self-sacrifice, but the benefits outweigh the costs. In some instances, you might need to give up leisure time after work or sacrifice sleep to prioritize learning. In other cases, you might need to carve an hour out of each work day. Regardless how you arrange the time, consider it a short-term loss. The time you spend learning is an investment in yourself and your future.

Learn With Others

One way to simplify learning while working is to do it with someone else. Whether you learn in a formal classroom or an online environment — or even start an informal book club at the office — learning with others provides valuable encouragement. If you are working on particular skills with team members at your job, you can give each other feedback and suggest areas for improvement. Working together can also improve motivation and commitment.

Set Long- and Short-Term Goals

The most successful professionals know that they must never stop learning. They must continue to set short- and long-term learning goals to improve their minds, their skills and their careers. By setting and achieving personal learning goals, you make goal-setting a habit and achieve more.

Enrolling in an online MBA program is an excellent way for working professionals to further their education and improve critical skills in management, marketing and business strategies. The coursework and the collaborative environment of an MBA program help professionals expand their minds and learn in peer groups. The experience you gain in an MBA program can benefit a professional career for decades to come.

Learn more about UT Tyler’s online MBA program.


Growth Engineering: 5 Ways to Leverage Informal Learning in the Workplace

Usable Knowledge: Learning to Learn at Work

Inc.: Why Constant Learners All Embrace the 5-Hour Rule

Related Articles

Our Commitment to Content Publishing Accuracy

Articles that appear on this website are for information purposes only. The nature of the information in all of the articles is intended to provide accurate and authoritative information in regard to the subject matter covered.

The information contained within this site has been sourced and presented with reasonable care. If there are errors, please contact us by completing the form below.

Timeliness: Note that most articles published on this website remain on the website indefinitely. Only those articles that have been published within the most recent months may be considered timely. We do not remove articles regardless of the date of publication, as many, but not all, of our earlier articles may still have important relevance to some of our visitors. Use appropriate caution in acting on the information of any article.

Report inaccurate article content:

Request More Information

Submit this form, and an Enrollment Specialist will contact you to answer your questions.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Or call 877-588-3286

Begin Application Process

Start your application today!

or call 877-588-3286 877-588-3286

for help with any questions you may have.

Apply now to save on an online MBA program!

With limited-time tuition savings of more than $150 per credit hour, now is the ideal time to get started on your 100% online accelerated MBA program from UT Tyler. Choose the specialized concentration tailored to your professional goals and apply today.

This discounted tuition rate is for newly enrolled students and is valid for the January 2024 term through the October 2024 term. Student must apply by the term’s application deadline and enroll by the term’s registration deadline start to qualify. The discounted tuition rate will consist of $739.21 per credit hour or $2,217.62 per 3 credit hour course. The discounted tuition rate cannot be combined with any other scholarship or partner rate. Students who have previously stepped-out of a University of Texas at Tyler program once started will not qualify for this offer. This offer will not be retroactively available to students. The discounted tuition rate will expire in October 2024. The discounted tuition rate includes all fees and is subject to change without notice. The University reserves the right to increase tuition and fees at any time.

UT Tyler Online
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.