I picked up on this post on Thinking big about small pieces
from Euan Semple
from a response Imagination, intuition ... and small steps?
by Dina Mehta
One of the challenges for those of us who believe that we are at the beginning of a very significant period of change in how we see ourselves, our societies and our businesses is how to imagine what the future will be like. Having grand schemes and megalomaniac designs seems out of place with something that is in essence personal and intimate.
Part of me believes that we will get somewhere worthwhile if each of us takes the small steps that seem to make sense to us and that in aggregate these small steps will achieve something significant. The other part of me believes that this will confine us to thinking small and achieving less than we could and that without some inspiring, grander and more comprehensive vision we won't make much difference at all.
This ties in with concerns I have about making things happen in a world where making things happen is associated with old values and ways of thinking. How do you bring about significant change using conversations, influence and sticky ideas rather than command and control and grand plans?
In response, I shared with Euan one of my favorite quotes:
Children do not need to be made to learn to be better, told what to do or shown how. If they are given access to enough of the world, they will see clearly enough what things are truly important to themselves and to others, and they will make for themselves a better path into that world then anyone else could make for them.
Like Euan, I have been wrestling with these very thoughts for some years and clearly Dina has too. Coincidentally, Euan and I met up in London last week and briefly discussed the issue and we agreed to take a long walk along the river Thames in a week or two to discuss the topic. I am looking forward to it.