Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Who's Diverse? Jon Hamm Is! Ideas for Changing Education

Jon Hamm is diverse:

Mad Men
30 Rock
The Town
Jon Hamm's Jon Ham (SNL)

We can all be Jon Hamm's here's how...

Today is a continuation of Monday's post.

To recap:
The Idea Hunter is organized around this acronym:

I Interested – Be Interested, Not Just Interesting
D Diverse-Diversifying the Hunt
E Exercised-Mastering the Habits of the Hunt
A-Agile- Idea Flow is Critical
Diversifying the Hunt

A narrow focus will not lead to Educational Change. By this I mean, looking only within in Education, and not outside at other businesses or institutions.

Which begs the question, Who is in your Idea Network?

Boyton and Fischer discuss networks having strong and weak ties.
Strong ties, as you might suspect, are the people you work with most days, perhaps team members or staff. A weak tie is someone who is in a different social circle, professionally or sometimes in another part of the organization.

An American socialist, Mark Granovetter, wrote an influential paper Strength of Weak Ties (1973). Based on the idea of job hunting, you are more likely to secure a job reaching out through weak ties, WHY?...because reaching out to those with Strong ties, resulted in a smaller circle of job leads. (p. 52)

It is important to note that weak ties do not not serve the function of experts but rather different voices on a subject. "Their role is to say things you might not otherwise hear, spark thoughts that otherwise might not come to mind. What they provide is not a substitute for expertise it is a supplement." (p. 53)

I think the best pop culture example is Undercover Boss, in which bosses went undercover as one of their workers and made discoveries that they would not have previously considered.

"Widening Your Intellectual Bandwith" (p.54) How To Tune in To Other Frequencies

Sure we need to have depth in our knowledge, and this comes from focusing on all educational themed resources (blogs, journals, conferences etc.) But there is also a necessity to look beyond because, "Innovation is fueled by diversity." (p.63)

I can speak from experience. Naturally I have a tendency to find interesting ideas but only recently have a tried to marry it with education. Here is a list of my new gems that are not considered to be in the field of Education.

1. Blogs
Many of the blogs that I subscribe to are focused on business or writing.
Seth Godin
Zen Habits
Brain Pickings

2. Audio Books
Poke the Box
Trust Agents
The Element
The Laws of Success

3. Magazines

4. Books
Caffeine for the Creative Mind
Presentation Zen
The Art of Changing Hearts,Minds and Actions

This is just a peek at some of the ways I diversify. Do you have any favorites that you'd like to share?

Until Next Time,
Lit Maven Out!

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