first-person learning

Listening for Context: Discovering the Unexamined

The nature of being human shifts when we listen for context rather than for mere content. In our last blog post on the Importance of Context, I distinguished between the significance and decisiveness of context. We saw that listening, more than any other human faculty, is our access to context. This blog post explores several ways that listening is decisive.

Listening and Meaning-Making

Humans make sense of life in the meaning we assign to events. In a sense, we are literary beings. Things matter to us because they bring meaning to our existence. By DOWNLOAD PDF

By |2020-06-10T17:24:40-04:00June 8th, 2020|Blog|0 Comments

The Importance of Context in Listening and Life

“Information is now both content and context.” A passing comment made by my mentor in 1999, has since stuck with me and changed the way I think and listen. It was as prescient as Marshall McLuhan’s 1964 comment, “the medium is the message.”

To date, the importance and pervasiveness of context remains a mystery. What is it? How can we discern and create it? The subject of context—defining, distinguishing, and examining its application—is worth exploring.

Defining Context  

A good way to start is to differentiate content from context.

  1. Content, from the Latin contensum (“held together”), is the DOWNLOAD PDF
By |2020-05-22T14:22:00-04:00May 19th, 2020|Blog|0 Comments

2020 Marks 20 Years of Learning and Change

It happened 20 years ago this month. I was teaching graduate students full-time in organizational leadership, and one of my students made me an offer. He wanted to use some of our course work to expand leadership in his vast public healthcare network.

Leaping from academics to consulting revealed a steep learning curve. First off, I had no company. The following journey offers an overall report of our discoveries and some emerging and enduring questions.

Phase One: Leap and Learn

On January 15, 2000, I created Leadership Innovations, Inc. In doing DOWNLOAD PDF

By |2020-02-03T14:58:56-05:00January 6th, 2020|Blog|2 Comments