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edu180atl: jason guggenheim 1.25.12

Insight often comes in unexpected packages: we all strive to be the best we can be, whether as parents, spouses, friends or professionals.  As a management consultant, I am trained to solve complex problems, push the proverbial envelope of ideas, and do this day-in and day-out surrounded by smart and talented people.  So I guess one could say I am learning all the time, challenging conventional wisdom.

Yet the challenge of this short blog made me question the source of some of my most insightful learnings.  What I realized was that they flow not from my profession, but from my children.  Too often the art of conversation with our children is replaced by other more efficient, yet less rich modes of communication; emails, texts and instant messages as examples.  However, when we take the time to talk, quietly, I am dumbfounded by their innocent absorption of ideas, concepts and imagery, and their ability to ask me questions, and give me answers that truly amaze me.  So, when I am in the mood to truly learn, I don’t necessarily rely on fully grown individuals, or even the tremendous Wikipedia, I take time with the ever questioning children in my life and try get a glimpse of the world through their eyes.  I am never disappointed by what I learn.

About the author: Jason Guggenheim; husband, father of 3, management consultant…continuously working to keep these in the right order.

3 Comments Post a comment
  1. Great post, Jason. Whether it was your intention or not, you speak to two important points. First, the importance of embracing simplicity in a culture that seemingly defaults to complexity. Education reform, issues of equity and enterprise in our economy–we often seek meta-solutions that tend to divide the partisan and confound those who are willing but feel incapable of effecting change. Chip and Dan Heath hint at this in their book Switch (“shrink the change”)–a marvelous read.

    Second, I’m ever mindful that how I communicate with others changes with the medium, whether face to face or with the various electronic means. What was once a clumsy, wandering, but character-rich conversation with one of my junior high students has become a transaction of language. I blame email, but I’m the one reading it. And I’m the one clicking the “Reply” button.

    What I love most about your post is the suggestion that, whether figuratively or literally, “you can always go home again.” Thanks for sharing.

    January 25, 2012
  2. Thank you for this. I get much of my insight from my daughter. Here’s to such good conversations!

    January 26, 2012
  3. Julie Sadtler #

    It’s a good reminder to stop and listen, and see what we can learn with those who might have unique perspectives, even those little ones around us! Great post, Jason!

    January 27, 2012

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