Gurteen Knowledge Letter: Issue 162 - December 2013


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 162 - December 2013


  1. Introduction to the December 2013 Knowledge Letter
  2. Listening to ignite rather than listening to reply
  3. Take a Seat and Make a Friend
  4. Pause and Reflect
  5. Gurteen Knowledge Tweets: December 2013
  6. Upcoming Events
  7. Subscribing and Unsubscribing
  8. The Gurteen Knowledge Letter

Introduction to the December 2013 Knowledge Letter

Every Christmas, this knowledge letter gets shorter and shorter and later and later. This month is no exception! But then I hope you have far better things to do then to take the time to read it :-)

I hope you have had a wonderful Christmas and are looking forward to an exciting 2014!

Listening to ignite rather then listening to reply

Twenty or more years ago I came across this statement from Stephen Covey in talking about his fifth habit "Seek First to Understand, Then to be Understood" and it has had a profound impact on me.

Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.

And then over Christmas I stumbled over a short video interview with Nancy Kline where she says this:

I want to be listening in a way that is more interested in where you will go next than I am in what I am going to say next.

Credit: Nancy Kline

She thinks that the attention of one human being to another is an act of creation. Watch the video - it's only 2 mins long. Although, I have never quite articulated this in this past its always been an implicit principle behind my Knowledge Cafes.

It may seem strange but listening although usually seen as passive can be very powerful action!

Youu can learn more about Nancys work here.

The quality of everything we do depends on the quality of the thinking we do first.

The quality of our thinking depends on the way we treat each other while we are thinking.

Credit: Nancy Kline

Take a Seat and Make a Friend

This Take a Seat and Make a Friend? is a wonderful idea. It reminds me of Theodore Zeldin's way of connecting strangers through his Conversaton Dinners.

Thanks to Luis Suarez who wishes to humanise everything who pointed me to this.

Luis also talks about serendipity as I did recently in these two posts Serendipity and talking with strangers and Serendipity and Randomised Coffee Trials

We realy do need to connect more and get to know and understand each other as human beings.

Pause and Reflect

I have long thought that the real value in an after-action review was not all the lessons captured and stored but simply taking the time to "pause and reflect" together and the actual conversation that takes place, so I was pleased to see this blog post ‘Pause & Reflect' session or an ‘After Action Review'? from Paul Corney.

Pausing and reflecting is probably also an easier concept to introduce to an organisation than more formal after-action reviews.

I also like the idea of "the power of 3" - that most people can remember 3 things and act on them. I lean much more to "the power of 1" though :-)

I think people are far more likely to remember and act on just one thing than three. It's why at the end of most of my Knowledge Cafes, I go around the circle and ask everyone to share one "actionable insight" with the group - one thing that they are taking away from the conversation and plan to do or has had a significant impact on the way that they see things that will almost certainly alter the course of future decisions that they make.

Paul also mentions reverse brainstorming. I am not too sure if its the same concept that I work with but It probably is as I learnt it from Victor Newman whom Paul mentions in his post. This is the Reverse Brainstorming process that I use.

Gurteen Knowledge Tweets: December 2013

Here are what I consider some of my more interesting Tweets for October to November 2013. 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.

It's a rather short list this month ... funny, early new year is never a good time for conferences for some reason and most of the major KM events take place in the latter half of the year.

KM Russia 2013
David Gurteens Kunnskap Café
29 Jan 2014, Oslo, Norway

Henley Forum Conference 2014
26 - 27 Feb 2014, Henley on Thames, United Kingdom

4th International Action Learning Conference
14 - 16 Apr 2014, Berkhamsted, United Kingdom

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 Henley 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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