Gurteen Knowledge-Letter: Issue 150 - December 2012


The Gurteen Knowledge Letter is a monthly newsletter that is distributed to members of the Gurteen Knowledge Community. You may receive the Knowledge Letter by joining the community. Membership is totally free. You may read back-copies here.

Gurteen Knowledge-Letter: Issue 150 - December 2012


  1. Introduction to the December 2012 Knowledge Letter
  2. Abandon lectures, memorisation and tests. Start to learn by doing and practice, not theory.
  3. Verbal Judo: Diffusing Conflict Through Conversation
  4. Working out loud
  5. The really big idea of social business and social KM
  6. Two great newsletters worth taking a look at
  7. Gurteen Knowledge Tweets: December 2012
  8. Upcoming Events
  9. Upcoming Engagements
  10. Subscribing and Unsubscribing
  11. The Gurteen Knowledge Letter

Introduction to the December 2012 Knowledge Letter

As I hope you are aware I have a Gurteen Knowledge Community discussion forum on LinkedIn that now has over 3,500 members and is very active.

Earlier this month Google+ rolled out a new feature called Google+ Communities, which is similar to Facebook Groups. Google+ allows you to create public or private communities.

Up until now I have not been a big user of Google+ but the communities might just make all the difference and so I have created a Google+ Gurteen Knowledge Community.

I am not too sure how this will develop given the active LinkedIn forum but let's see. I much prefer the implementation of the Google+ communities to the LinkedIn Groups as they are easier to use and more functional. There is also not the annoying Linkedin limit where you can not be a member of more than 50 groups.

Incidentally, there seem to be a number of interesting communities emerging on Google+. This one on Conversation I particularly like.

You may recall that I am getting married on 27 December to Leni so this Christmas is going to be a very special one for me and my family. Here's wishing you a Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year too :-)

Abandon lectures, memorisation and tests. Start to learn by doing and practice, not theory.

In this blog post Roger Schank: Only two things wrong with education: 1) What we teach; 2) How we teach Don Clark looks at the work of Roger Schank.

If you have any interest in education then this is well worth the read. Here are a few excerpts that resonated with me and might wet your appetite.:

School, he thinks, has turned into a funnelling process for Universities. This is a big mistake. His solution is to have lots of curricula and allow people to follow their curiosity and interests, as this is what drives real, meaningful and useful learning, as opposed to memorisation and hoop jumping

Schank ... wants to abandon lectures, memorisation and tests. Start to learn by doing and practice, not theory. Stop lecturing and delivering dollops of theory. Stop building and sitting in classrooms. We need to teach cognitive processes and acquire skills through the application of these processes, not fearing failure.

He prefers to deliver learning from mentored experience, not from direct instruction presented out of context.

The article confirms my view just how broken our educational system is. I think we are going to see some big changes over the coming years.

Verbal Judo: Diffusing Conflict Through Conversation

Academic-turned-cop (now that's an unusual career move) George Doc Thompson describes how tactical language allows leaders to achieve their goals.

This is an amazing man. I only discovered him the other day while browsing the Google+ Conversation community.

He reminds me a lot of the late Stephen Covey. He looks a little like him, he sounds a lot like him and his presentation style is similar. At times, I even get the impression he was influenced by Stephen, especially when he talks about empathic listening.

In Googling him I was sad to discover that he died in 2011 not long after the this video was recorded. He was one of the leading experts in verbal self-defence tactics and trained law-enforcement agencies around the world.

This is what Wikipedia says about Verbal Judo:

Verbal self-defense, also known as verbal judo,is defined as using one's words to prevent, de-escalate, or end an attempted assault.

It is a way of using words as a way to maintain your mental and emotional safety.

This kind of "conflict management" involves using posture and body language, tone of voice, and choice of words as a means for calming a potentially volatile situation before it can manifest into physical violence.

This often involves techniques such as taking a time-out, deflecting the conversation to less argumentative topics, and/or redirecting the conversation to other individuals in the group who are less passionately involved.

The benefit of Verbal Judo is clear when it comes to law enforcement but I think there is much we can all learn from the concept when we get into "arguments" with people whether in the workplace or in the family. Too often when someone gets emotionally upset and angry with us, we pour fuel on the flames and not water.

Working out loud

I always like it when someone gives a name or a label to a concept that has taken a sentance to describe in the past. Often its a simple metaphor that makes it easy to remember.

In this case, I like the concept of "working out loud". In other words, doing your work transparently in such a way that other people can "see it" or as John Stepper says narrating your work and making it observable. Yes, I realise we are mixing metaphors here LOL

Harold Jarche has some thoughts on how to get started. It's really quite easy.

The really big idea of social business and social KM

The really big idea of the social business is to reconfigure agency in a way that brings relationships into the center.

The task is to see action within relationships. It is about interdependence instead of independence.

Amyarta Sen has written that wealth should not be measured by what we have but what we can do.

As we engage in new relationships we are creating new potentials for action.

Ties in nicely with my view as to what Social KM is all about.

Two great newsletters worth taking a look at

If you have the time and the passion for reading newsletters then here are two that you may like to subscribe to. Both are from people working broadly in my field and whom I greatly respect.
Enjoy :-)

Gurteen Knowledge Tweets: December 2012

Here are what I consider some of my more interesting Tweets for November 2012 - December 2012. Take a look, if you are not a Tweeter, you will get a good idea of how I use it by browsing the list of micro-posts.

If you like the Tweets then subscribe to my Tweet stream.

Upcoming Events

Here are some of the major KM events taking place around the world in the coming months and ones in which I am actively involved. You will find a full list on my website where you can also subscribe to both regional e-mail alerts and RSS feeds which will keep you informed of new and upcoming events.

IKMI Certified Knowledge Practitioner and Manager
13 - 17 Jan 2013, Mishref, Kuwait

KM Legal Europe 2013
23 - 24 Jan 2013, Amsterdam, Netherlands
I will be giving the keynote at this conference.

Professional Development Certificates in Knowledge Management
27 - 31 Jan 2013, Kuwait, Kuwait

Learning Technologies Conference
29 - 30 Jan 2013, London, United Kingdom

eduhub days 2013
30 - 31 Jan 2013, St. Gallen, Switzerland
I will be giving a keynote talk at this conference.

Henley KM Forum Annual Conference
27 - 28 Feb 2013, Henley on Thames, United Kingdom
I will be attending this conference.

14th European Conference on Knowledge Management
05 - 06 Sep 2013, Kaunas, Lithuania

Upcoming Engagements

Here are my main engagements over the next six months or so. Its prime purpose is to allow you to know where I will be so you can attend my public events if you wish or to meet or hire me.

You can see a list of my immediate activities below or you can find a full list here.

Opening keynote address KM Legal Europe: Positive deviance – or how you might already have the answers!
23 - 24 Jan 2013, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Keynote talk at Eduhub Days
30 - 31 Jan 2013, St Gallen, Switzerland

Subscribing and Unsubscribing

You may subscribe to this newsletter on my website. Or if you no longer wish to receive this newsletter or if you wish to modify your e-mail address or make other changes to your membership profile then please go to this page on my website.

The Gurteen Knowledge Letter

The Gurteen Knowledge-Letter is a free monthly e-mail based KM newsletter for knowledge workers. Its purpose is to help you better manage your knowledge and to stimulate thought and interest in such subjects as Knowledge Management, Learning, Creativity and the effective use of Internet technology. Archive copies are held on-line where you can register to receive the newsletter.

It is sponsored by the Knowledge Management Forum of the Henley Business School, Oxfordshire, England.

You may copy, reprint or forward all or part of this newsletter to friends, colleagues or customers, so long as any use is not for resale or profit and I am attributed. And if you have any queries please contact me.

Gurteen Knowledge
Fleet, United Kingdom

If you are interested in Knowledge Management, the Knowledge Café or the role of conversation in organizational life then you my be interested in this online book I am writing on Conversational Leadership
David Gurteen

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