Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Can The Core Learn From The Edge?

and vice versa?

I saw John Seely Brown speak at the Leadership Memphis Community Breakfast last week. I waited 'til the last minute to register -- because of the $50 fee -- but I'm glad I went.

One of the ideas he presented to the Leaders and me was the importance of learning from the edge -- if you're going to be innovative. Now this sounds good to me, because I am at the edge.

But what about the Leaders? Do they buy Brown's idea? They don't have to -- no one made him king. But if they buy it, how do they make it happen? How do they learn from the edge? Can they learn from the edge?

Here's an idea and a test: Leadership Memphis should roll their Executive Development Program and their Grassroots Leadership Program together. The former appears composed of leaders from established businesses and organizations; the latter, DIY leaders from low- or no-funded organizations. But they're both about community leadership.

Yes, a very wonkish idea but it will prove 2 things:
  1. we can learn from our breakfast speakers.
  2. we want to learn to learn from both the edge and the core.

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