E L S U A ~ A KM Blog by Luis Suarez

April 2011

“elsua’s ragbag” – The State of Social Collaboration

Gran Canaria - Meloneras in the WinterI need an online ragbag. I need, and pretty badly, a Web based ragbag, easy to use, fast enough to interact with on the go, pervasive, available at all times through multiple venues (Including mobile), where I can dump things quickly and share them across with others, or make them available for future reference for upcoming blog posts, clippings or whatever else. I am seriously starting to get tired of having multiple local text files with hundreds of links, golden nuggets, precious little gems that only me is benefiting from, therefore with a rather restrictive value altogether. I need to do better. I need to start curating all of that content a bit more socially. I need to stop using those text files and start looking for something a bit more innovative and lasting (Yes, Twitter is no longer an option in this regard, I am afraid), where not just me would be benefiting from sharing those knowledge snippets. Thus, finally, jumping the shark, once again!, allow me to introduce you, over here, the re-launch of elsua’s ragbag“.

Yes, that’s right! For the third, or fourth time (Can’t remember anymore), that I have tried in the last few months I am going to make use of my Posterous site, once again. Although this time around with a slightly different twist. Instead of having the flavour of sharing entries that were more or less elaborate to a certain extent, I think I’m going to take a little bit more of a chaotic approach to it all and start using it again with that flavour of a ragbag: “a miscellaneous collection“.

Indeed, a collection of everything that catches my attention; of everything that I find somewhat interesting and that I would think may well be worth while sharing across with the mission to abandon my locally stored text file(s) for good, whether it’s a snippet or a clipping to an interesting blog post, or from a Web site, or a video, a learning resource, an interesting and relevant presentation or those little precious gems that one bumps into every so often, I am hoping that “elsua’s ragbag” will be the new home to all of those serendipitous knowledge discoveries, as my good friend Ana Silva beautifully explained in a brilliant blog post, just recently, over at “Embrace Change, Embrace Serendipity“.

It would also help me serve as an excuse to check out Posterous, once again, and see what other improvements and enhancements it’s had over the course of months, since the last time I checked it out, specially, as I am starting to have that feeling of being left out from other social networking sites given a good number of recent negative happenings around them. Yes, in a way, trying to figure out whether Posterous can help serve the purpose of a refuge from some awkward behaviours that other major social networking sites have been going through over the last few months, couple of years already. Who knows… it may stick altogether this time around … for good! We shall see…

For now, I feel that strong urge to give it a try, once again, and see how this new experiment goes. Here is the RSS feed, if you would be interested in subscribing to it. If you are a Posterous user already, you can connect with it, too! by subscribing to it directly from the site, and I thought that perhaps I could get things going now with elsua’s ragbag by sharing one of the snippets I have bumped into earlier on, worth while mentioning it over here as well, specially since it talks about the subject of “Social Collaboration“:

(Click on the infographic to enlarge it…)

Rather interesting, don’t you think? Well, these are the kind of tidbits I am hoping to be sharing across from here onwards… Let’s see whether this time around I can make it stick. Bring it on then!

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Nancy White and Suzy – An Intro to Twitter

Gran Canaria - Meloneras in the WinterOver the last few days, perhaps last couple of weeks, I have been having, once again, that ongoing love / hate relationship with Twitter, inclining itself a little bit more on the hate side of things this time around. Unfortunately. Specially, with #newtwitter, seeing how the overall user experience has deteriorated quite a bit over the last few months with a clunky (not working) search engine, missing dozens of tweets from the main timeline, as well as a bunch of Mentions and replies not showing up at all, or sharing private DMs in the public timeline (Which surely does open up the door to some public embarrassment); not to mention the latest known issue of Twitter Lists stopping to work properly for a good number of days and still not being fixed. And the list keeps going on and on and on. Can you imagine your business having an Enterprise microblogging platform, whether internal or external, behaving in such way for days, if not months already? What would your customers think about it? How would your employees react towards not being capable of doing their job properly interacting with activity streams? How much longer can Twitter put up with providing such poor quality (customer) service, even more so when, not long ago, it killed the one and only reason from its own success from the very beginning a few years back? Inquiring minds would love to know …

But then again, every so often, something magic happens through Twitter, not because of the application itself, as we all know already, but, of course, because of the interactions AND conversations people engage with, and experience fully, while collaborating, learning and sharing their knowledge across with their various networks. Certainly, it’s thanks to those wonderful and precious little moments that one sticks around with Twitter for as long as those networks hang around such social networking site. But how long then? That’s an interesting and rather thought-provoking question (“Blogging, emailing and messaging aren’t owned by anybody. Tweeting is owned by Twitter. That’s a problem“) that Doc Searls, and a few others, have been wondering about lately…

However, and while Twitter tries to figure out what it wants to do with its customer base, whether to keep them loyal or perhaps forget about them altogether and let them go elsewhere, I would want to focus, for this blog entry, on that magical moment I was exposed to earlier on… through Twitter, of course. Indeed, earlier on today, the always inspiring Nancy White shared this tweet as she pointed out to a recent video clip where she is featured with Suzy, quite an special character!, as she explains in this blog post, spending a bit over 8 minutes talking about Twitter and why twittering makes sense.

Well, that video learning session on Twitter is probably one of the most delightful, “over the shoulders” mutual learning interviews, that you are probably ever going to bump into. Yes, ever! It’s an absolute delight, a true magical moment to watch, rejoice and experience fully. Stop doing whatever you would be doing right now, just hit the Play button on the embedded code below and, just simply, enjoy it! From now onwards, after having one of those wonderful little moments that makes everything worth it, every time that someone asks me about any education or learning resources available about Twitter (And twittering in general), any user guides, any rules, any good practices, any best advice, any …whatever, I am surely going to point them to this fantastic and stunning experience of watching “Nancy White and Suzy – An Intro to Twitter“:

Nancy White & Suzy – An Intro to Twitter from CommunityMatters on Vimeo.

Please, please, please, dear Twitter, go and fix your issues very very soon, so that we can all get to enjoy many many more magical moments like this one from today!

Yours sincerely,

One of your many Twitter addicts!

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The Art of Collaborating Effectively in Virtual Teams

Gran Canaria - Maspalomas Lighthouse - Meloneras in the WinterA few days back, over at GigaOm‘s WebWorkerDaily, Aliza Sherman shared a very interesting piece under a rather suggestive title: “5 Reasons Why Virtual Teams Fail“, where she pretty much nailed it on some of the various different issues that virtual teams face on a regular basis when confronted with that good old concept of collaborating effectively in a now more than ever distributed world. Plenty of people say that collaboration is not an easy task, whether face to face or whether remote, but certainly it looks like collaborating effectively online still presents a good bunch of challenges and issues, and Aliza’s article surely highlights some of the most relevant ones. Worth a read, for sure, but is there anything else that we can do to help improve remote collaboration in today’s rather complex environment? … Maybe.

Her blog entry highlights, according to her, and rather accurately, too!, 5 different reasons on why virtual teams seem to fail time and time again, and, while going through the descriptions of each and everyone of them, I couldn’t help nodding and agreeing with her big time, having experienced those same issues myself in the past, after having worked as a remote knowledge worker in multiple projects, in a number of business units, and over the course of the last 9 years. So I thought I would go ahead and spend some time today covering those same 5 reasons she talked about extensively and build further up on some additional tips distributed teams could apply to help avoid those specific issues. Specially, now that we have got social software tools available to us all to help improve, augment and develop further our own collaborative skills altogether.

Folks keep saying that collaborating effectively is an art and, to a great deal, I wholeheartedly agree with that statement; collaboration is not an easy task, specially, when knowledge workers do not know much on the topic itself or they mix it with other concepts like co-operation, coordination or communication altogether, for instance, and that’s why I would love to highly recommend you all have a look into a recent article published by my good friend Hyoun Park under the heading “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective Collaborators“, which I am sure will help shed some further light on identifying some key characteristics that would be essential for any effective, and rather efficient, collaborator. As a teaser, here you have got the listing of those 7 habits, to give you a little bit of background on what to expect from the article itself:

  1. “Don’t just work hard, work smart
  2. Partition collaborative goals into appropriate categories
  3. Identify the appropriate tools for each enterprise collaboration strategy
  4. Just do it! (NikeTM)
  5. Build a social life (integrated with your enterprise collaboration approach)
  6. Use collaboration to drive product development and R&D efforts
  7. Think of your salespeople as wolves. Like wolves, salespeople hunt better in packs

Ok, back to the “5 Reasons Why Virtual Teams Fail“; we have seen how Hyoun describes, quite nicely, what would be some personal traits of highly effective collaborators, but what else can we do to help avoid those same issues that Aliza mentions in her blog post, after going through the wonderful suggestions she has shared across as well on what we can do to help avoid each of those pitfalls when wanting to collaborative more effectively? That’s exactly what I will be doing next.

As a starting point, I would encourage you all to have a look and read her article in its entirety. It will be worth your time, I am sure! She has done a wonderful piece of work, specially, around the different ways she shared across to help tackle each and everyone of those pitfalls for virtual teams. I am not going to cover them all over here again, she is pretty much spot on on all of them, as far I can see; instead, what I am going to do is to develop further on this topic and share an additional set of tips to potentially help overcome those inhibitors towards collaborating effectively, regardless of the nature of the distributed team, so that remote ones out there may have an opportunity to add them up into the original article and have plenty more ammo available to them, should they see those issues come up in their day to day interactions with fellow knowledge workers and may not know where to go for additional help and support.Gran Canaria - Ayacata in the Winter

To get things going, I have taken the liberty of grabbing Aliza’s 5 reasons and next to each of them I will be adding a couple of lines suggesting as well What to do?”, but I would still encourage you all to keep an eye on her initial set of tips as they are all rather helpful at the same time on their own. So, let’s get things going!:

  1. Square pegs in round holes
  2. Lack of a clear process
  3. Weak training techniques
  4. Failure to capture knowledge
  5. No glue to keep it all together”

 

Square pegs in round holes

What to do? My good friend, and fellow IBM colleague, Rawn Shah, touched based on this very same topic over at “Working With Five Generations In The Workplace“, where he comes to talk about the rich diversity we have got nowadays within the workplace not only as far as multiple generations are concerned, but also as global, dispersed organisations for which remote collaboration is no longer a nice thing to have, but an essential trait to cultivate and excel at over time. Yes, we are bound to recognise we have got knowledge workers who are very capable of working remotely very effectively, while others may well not be; the important thing in this case is to realise it’s actually more of an advantage than a disadvantage. The key messages here are being flexible and celebrate multiple working styles trying to accommodate them with one another in the best possible way through one key aspect most businesses haven’t exploited well enough: negotiation. Understanding there would eventually need to be bridges being built up to allow for knowledge and information to flow freely, amongst the various different working styles, and with as little friction as possible. Basically, being agile in a rather complex, engaging, committed, embracing and nurturing diverse workplace.

Lack of clear process

What to do? At this point in time, I don’t think we would need to discuss further the importance of clear processes within virtual teams; like Aliza mentioned, those business processes are perhaps even a bit more rigid for virtual teams than for co-located ones. However, processes for virtual teams need to understand as well how flexibility is, once again, very important to help knowledge workers understand how by being flexible themselves in applying those processes they would have a much better success rate in negotiating how they collaborate with their peers. The key message here is that for that negotiation to take place those processes would probably need to be put together, initially, by the remote, virtual teams themselves, the ones who understand the dynamics of having everyone working distributed with different needs and wants, but also different expectations and trying to accommodate to the vast majority of them. This would be an interesting learning exercise at the beginning, till everyone adjusts and arrives to the same page, which is when those processes would kick in, but it’s that learning path the one that’s going to allow virtual teams shape up those processes according to their needs and requirements and not everyone else’s!

Weak training techniques

What to do? This is one of my favourites! Let’s go back in time for a minute … When was the last time you had some kind of education, or training, on collaborating effectively with your team colleagues in a co-located environment? When was the last time someone spent some time with you sharing further insights on how to make the most out of your team’s collaborative tools, whether you are working remotely, or not? I bet that would be quite some time ago for both of them, wouldn’t you agree? Indeed, the key message in here is to never underestimate providing enough, good, solid education, training and assistance to virtual teams in order to help them understand how they can collaborate and share their knowledge effectively by working smarter, not necessarily harder. You can never have enough education on not just running and managing virtual teams, but also how to be a good virtual team player. It’d be essential as it would help people understand how collaboration is a whole lot more than just worrying about collaborative tools; it’s a mindset, it’s a change of habits, it’s a shift in mentalities going from a need to know to a need to share, it’s an opportunity to learn from one another sharing your knowledge with others and allowing it to grow further in order to achieve a specific task or a specific goal.

That’s what, to me, collaboration is all about. Having the right training resources available to you is one other key element to take into account and that’s why I have always been very fond of the amazing piece of work that former IBMer, and good friend, Peter Andrews did, for a good number of years, in providing an entire course outline, both for managers and remote workers, on how to operate effectively in virtual teams. Plenty of which materials can still be found in multiple different places. Now you can imagine how important and critical such training and education has been for a company like IBM where over 50% of its population are remote / virtual workers. Again, you can never have enough education to train your remote knowledge workers, and their managers, on how they can collaborate and share their knowledge more effectively.

Failure to capture knowledge

What to do? This is, perhaps, one of the biggest issues for virtual teams, specially, if they are rather distributed across timezones and geographies or across multiple silos. And perhaps this is one of the areas where social software tools could surely help make that task of capturing knowledge much much easier. As a starting point, knowledge workers who are very keen already on sharing their knowledge and collaborating across with their peers will keep using these social tools regardless, in an effort to try to capture most of the transferred knowledge. The potential issue may come along with those other knowledge workers who are still a bit reluctant about jumping on board. And, to me, the key message here is to embrace that reluctance and look into it as an opportunity to introduce lower, common denominators in the social networking space, which, in most cases, would start with that well known low hanging fruit that we have all fallen in love, cultivate and nurture over time: Activity Streams.

Yes, that’s right! Microblogging or microsharing, the lowest common denominator to dive into the social software world; the one key component from the Enterprise social software landscape that will require very little effort as far as the buy-in is concerned, but that would provide a tremendous amount of added value, as I have mentioned already on a good number of different blog posts, on this very same topic. In this case, it’d be all about finding that sweet spot to move into, as those remote knowledge workers transition from that physical water cooler concept that we used to call coffee corner over at this side of the pond, to that virtual water cooler one that we know as the wonderful world of Status Updates, where keeping up with your social capital through ambient intimacy, following some declarative living guidelines to eventually end up narrating your work is probably going to be one of the most powerful means to capture that knowledge before it goes away or vanishes.

No glue to keep it all together

What to do? And, last, but not least, the biggest challenge all virtual teams face, don’t you think? That one of having a “vigilant, organised and nimble” leader. Not an easy task, for sure, perhaps one of the biggest challenges, but one thing that we could all perhaps acknowledge as a starting point is that as virtual teams get to develop their relationships with those daily interactions and conversations amongst remote workers, there is a great chance that you will have an opportunity to go and locate those natural leaders, the ones whose main premise would be to look after the health of the virtual team, since they realise, from moment one, on the true importance of remote collaboration in an environment where most knowledge workers are distributed anyway already.

Gran Canaria - Degollada de las Yeguas and Surroundings in the Winter The more understanding and involvement from that natural leader a team has, the better; the more aligned those natural leaders are towards working as if operating in networks and communities, versus organisations and traditional, rigid structures, the better. Ideally, those natural leaders should be a blend of traditional management and new radical leadership, as Steve Denning has put it just recently, and quite nicely, too!, in his latest book on “A Leader’s Guide to Radical Management“. In fact, every virtual team should probably strive to look for their own leaders, versus their own managers, because that’s eventually what managing a virtual team is all about: leading by example with their passion, wit, know-how, experiences and knowledge, more than managing by command and control.

And that’s it! I surely understand this is probably one of the longest blog entries I have put together over here in a long while, but I am hoping it would be a useful read for those folks who are not only working as remote knowledge workers in virtual, distributed teams, but also for those co-located peers who would need to understand some of the different dynamics as well behind working remotely than being at the office; changing such perceptions is also going to be key and rather fundamental for virtual teams to succeed, because not every single remote knowledge worker out there is doing the laundry, or watching TV, every time they work from their home office. They may actually be doing some good / excellent work altogether.

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Community Managers and the Art of Facilitating Communities Effectively – Part Deux

Gran Canaria - Maspalomas Dunes in the WinterOne of the many great things from sharing your blog posts on Twitter (And I am sure that would apply as well to other social networking sites), to alert folks that new, fresh content is available in your blog, is the fact that shortly after there is always a great chance that you will get back a bunch of replies, retweets and Mentions from your tweeps sharing some additional commentary to your blog entries or perhaps a bunch of new links to related and relevant articles already available out there. Yes, I know! I, too, love it when that happens! And that’s actually the main premise behind this Part Deux from “Community Managers and the Art of Facilitating Communities Effectively“, continuing with that series of blog posts talking about online communities and the key role of the community managers or community facilitators.

So let’s go then! Let’s get started with this rather interesting and helpful article put together by Glen Gilmore under the heading “4 Tips for Social Media Community Managers“, where he shares a bunch of nice tips on how to survive being a community facilitator in the social media world, combining having fun, sharing what inspires you (Once again, let your passion shine through!), looking for others to join in the fun and when things get really hot, look for a hydrant to open up! Great points altogether shared across by Glen, specially, the fun aspect of being a community facilitator, which helps us reintroduce, once again, the whole concept of fun@work, which I will talk about in an upcoming blog post, as I feel it’s got enough meat to discuss it separately.

Another interesting, and rather relevant, read is that one put together by seasoned community facilitator, at Sprouter, Erin Bury, who a couple of days back put together this wonderful read over at Mashable, under the heading “The 5 Qualities of Highly Effective Community Managers“, and which surely describes some of what I, too, consider the most fundamental traits from a good online community facilitator, whether you are getting involved with social networking tools or not. To name:

  1. “Passion for Your Industry
  2. Varied Experience
  3. Resourcefulness
  4. Flexibility
  5. Personality”

I am not going to spoil it further for you, but I think that summary of those traits that Erin talks about in that article would give you a hint or two of what you can expect. However, I can certainly recommend you have a look into the entire article as she has put together plenty of know-how and first hand experiences on what it is like building and facilitating a healthy growth for your online communities. My personal favourite one is #5. Personality, which also reflects on my own perception of how I view online facilitators as the “corporate” brand, i.e. the visible “heads”, of the communities they facilitate; great personalities make up for great individual brands, which, eventually, turn out to help improve the overall community brand. It makes it contagious, It thrives on passion and willingness to help out others. It’s the glue that helps community members stick together, have a strong sense of belonging and a willingness for them to become the next natural leaders. In short, great personalities in online facilitators will help develop further healthier, mature and self-aware communities where conversations flow naturally. The way they should.

Finally, another interesting resource that I thought would be really helpful to include in this blog post is the one that one of my favourite people, Howard Rheingold, shared across on a recent tweet under the title “The Art of Hosting Good Conversations Online“. This is an absolute must-read for any online facilitator out there and for anyone interested in communities, in general. Absolutely wonderful read with so many golden nuggets that it will keep you busy digesting them all for a long while! The really fascinating thing though from that particular resource that Howard shared across is the fact that he put it together in 1998!, yes, that’s right, you are reading it correctly, in 1998!! and 13 years later it’s still as valid and resourceful as it was back then!

I am sure you may have noticed how Howard doesn’t use the wording “Community Manager“, term that, like you all know already, I don’t feel too comfortable with altogether either. He uses the term “Host” instead, which I think is rather appropriate, because, in a sense, that’s what an online community facilitator does on a regular basis: hosting an engaged group of people willing to converse, learn and share their knowledge with one another on a topic most of them are really passionate about. And that’s where the art part kicks in, because like any host of any party it’s that art of managing interactions amongst party attendees the one that confirms whether the party has been a great success or a total failure! Yes, indeed, I really like his concept of a Community Host.

Another brilliant, and rather relevant, connotation to the concept of “Community Host” that permeates throughout the entire Web site Howard put together back then is the whole concept of the community facilitator as a helpful, accommodating, obliging and serviceable community member, realising that perhaps the needs of the community and its many members would probably be ahead and before his / her own needs, which surely is a notion I would agree with 100% if he / she would want the community to thrive along and eventually succeed. No much room for egos to fight one another to see who is better at doing something. In online communities there are hardly ever any hierarchies in place based on those egos and somehow I feel we are much better of without them.

I guess at this point in time there would be very little more that I would need to add to such a wonderful resource that Howard put together back in the day. However, to summarise things further a bit, I have taken the liberty of putting together over here the headings of the different sections covered by his Web site, so that you can have a look on what to expect as you head over there to read the rather lengthy, but well worth reading, article in itself:

  • “What an online host wants to achieve
  • Good online discussions
  • A host is … “(Highly recommend you check out this section as well about online facilitator characteristics)
  • “What a host does, what a host tries to grow
  • Host behaviour” (Another essential read, if you ask me)

And that’s it for now! I hope you get to enjoy all of these wonderful resources on online community facilitation as we all come to realise how building and sustaining helpful online communities is a whole lot more than just worrying about the new community social tooling, and more around the art of having AND facilitating engaging and long lasting conversations to take place. So, what are some of your favourite tips to keep your communities going strong? Care to share them in the comments? We would surely love to hear them! Bring them on! 🙂

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The Mountain by Terje Sorgjerd

There is probably nothing better, and perhaps even more adequate, than getting started another week at work with something really inspiring that can get you going off to a great start, don’t you think? That’s why as I am about to get things going with what promises to be another one of those rather hectic and buzzing weeks, I thought I would create this short blog post with a link to one of those video clips that has been making the rounds already all over the place, but that one cannot stop watching over and over again. Of course, I am talking about “The Mountain” by Terje Sorgjerd. Can you spare a bit over three minutes as you get started with your own week at work? Not to worry, it will be worth it, I am sure. It is that good and so much more!

Terje is already a well known photographer, and film maker, after the stunning “The Aurora“, which I can also strongly recommend you have a look into, if you haven’t seen it just yet, but this time around with “The Mountain” he has surely raised the bar on redefining the concept of wonderfully beautiful. A couple of weeks ago he visited Tenerife, one of the neighbour islands from Gran Canaria, where I live, and certainly one of my favourite Canary Islands as well, to “capture the beautiful Milky Way galaxy along with one of the most amazing mountains I know El Teide“. And the end-result would probably exceed the expectations from anyone out there, even the most demanding. If not, judge for yourselves… Here’s the embedded code of the video clip he put together with some fantastic music that surely fits in right along with the overall theme and be ready to be wowed big time!:

The Mountain from Terje Sorgjerd on Vimeo.

Pretty amazing, don’t you think? I have watched it a few times already, and I am certain you would do, too!; and cannot help but remembering a whole bunch of great memories from when I was there a couple of years ago, on a short holiday break, enjoying one of the most wonderful and humbling life experiences I can remember having visited a couple of times Mount Teide and its truly inspiring National Park . Back then I went a bit crazy and took a whole bunch of photos (That I have put together in my Flickr account under the Tenerife set), so I couldn’t help it this morning, as I was sipping my cup of coffee, to go through a bunch of those pictures in the context of Terje’s video and remind myself I need to visit the island, and father Teide, once again. So this year, I am planning already on coming back very soon for plenty more and I can certainly recommend that if you haven’t been there just yet, make some time to spend a few days there, because I can guarantee you it would be totally worth while the visit … and the stay altogether.

Tenerife - Los Roques De García & Mount Teide

Tenerife - Los Roques De García & Mount Teide

Tenerife - Los Roques De García & Mount Teide

Happy week everyone! 🙂


Update 26/04/2011: And my good friend Ed Yourdon just tweeted across this particular article, where it is mentioned how Terje put together the final video clip having to work with up to 2.4 terabytes of data, to create one of those gems that one learns to treasure and love more and more every time you keep hitting the Play button. Mind-blowing probably falls very short on the description of Terje’s hard work. Well done and thanks much, Ed, for sharing it across! Much much appreciated!

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On Being Wrong by Kathryn Schulz

What if we were all wrong all along? Why all of this everlasting obsession about always being right? How can we possibly claim we are always right and never wrong? Why do we have to feel that bad about being wrong altogether? Can we live a fruitful life outside rightness and still feel good about it? Well, apparently we can! And when several of your social networks keep talking about the very same TED Talk video on this very same subject, I guess you should stop for a minute and watch it, don’t you think? That’s what I did exactly earlier on today and why I thought you folks should, too! Have you seen Kathryn Schulz‘s Talk on the topic “On Being Wrong“? If you haven’t, I would strongly encourage you all to spend the next 18 minutes to enjoy one of the most thought-provoking, refreshing and liberating arguments against always thriving to being right, when perhaps we shouldn’t, as humane as we all feel we are…

Mind-blowing, don’t you think? After watching Kathryn’s TED Talk, I guess, from now onwards, I am going to start living more outside of that “bubble of rightness”; it looks like it is just a much more enticing learning experience altogether, specially, since it would help me avoid that series of unfortunate assumptions that she described beautifully and which I can certainly acknowledge having experienced one way or another and in multiple times:

  1. The Ignorance Assumption
  2. The Idiocy Assumption
  3. The Evil Assumption

I do realise it’s not going to be an easy task to do, since we have all been educated all along towards always being right, and never wrong, towards success versus failure (When was the last time someone told you to embrace failure, acknowledge it, learn from it, move on and try not to repeat it again, for the second or third time, for instance?), but then again, if we don’t do so, according to Kathryn, it will result in us losing our own humanity and becoming all too boring at the same time. I mean, can you imagine everyone being right about something? I guess we wouldn’t want to be like that, I suppose, but what do you reckon? Still think that being right is worth the effort of fighting with “the other side”? I am not so sure anymore after watching that Talk … Maybe we have been wrong all along and never noticed, because we all thought we had it right in the first place. Ha! Perhaps Augustine had it right all along: “Fallor ergo sum“.

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