Blog Post

Are there any questions?

Posted to Gurteen Knowledge-Log by David Gurteen on 27 March 2013



Are there any questions?
WeblogGurteen Knowledge Log
Knowledge LetterAppears in the Gurteen Knowledge Letter issue: 153
Posted DateWednesday 27 March 2013 15:54 GMT
Posted ByDavid Gurteen
Linkshttp://www.johnniemoore.com/blog/archives/003181.php ... 
http://www.johnniemoore.com/blog/archives/003181.php#comment ... 
http://cognitive-edge.com/blog/entry/5915/babies-bathwater-a ... 
http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/your-brain-work/201104/r ... 
http://www.slideshare.net/frogdesign/lift-conference-design- ... 
http://www.nancydixonblog.com/2009/02/a-rant-on-are-there-an ... 

Recently, I wrote about Conversational Conferences. I had two online responses that I am grateful for. First, Dave Snowden responded in a blog post Babies & bathwater again and then Johnnie Moore with Why I wont be rushing to attend KM conferences. In turn, I responded in a comment to Johnnie's post here.

The bottom line is that I am in almost total agreement with Dave and Johnnie. I would love to see richer, more engaging conferences with a variety of presentation and interactive sessions as they suggest.

The problem is that is that most commercial conference organisers are not ready for this. And its not just KM conferences :-) My idea is a simple one. It is to add a short conversational element to the traditional lecture style talk which form the majority of sessions at any conference.

To move FROM presentation + no time for q&A TO presentation + reflection + conversation + q&a

This is only meant to be a baby step in the direction of better learning events. My hope is that once conference organisers realise how effective this format can be it will give them the courage to go further. Time will tell.

Interestingly, in Googling for other people's views on conferences, I found this post by Nancy Dixon from 2009. A Rant on Are There Any Questions? This is how she starts

Every good speaker knows that at the end of a presentation, you have to leave time for questions.

Hogwash! Leaving time for questions is the worse learning process we could have invented.

We've all been brainwashed into the pseudo learning theory that asking for questions at the end of a presentation makes it a better learning experience for the audience. Wrong!

If you feel like me you will love this video Chicken chicken chicken but see it through to the "Any questions?" session at the end :-)

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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