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Lead By Explaining Something to Yourself Out Loud

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Our Words Always Boomerang

Early in Dr. Luke’s account of the nascent church, a central character was named Peter. Peter was a guy who processed things aloud: he had a mind-mouth connection that sometimes got him into trouble. But in Dr. Luke’s account, Peter’s verbal processing framed what was an entirely new situation. Peter grabbed pieces of the Law and Prophets and combined them with what he observed to sort out what they were all experiencing. In doing so, he freed many to participate in the ongoing conversation. The resulting conversation was nothing less than explosive.

Walk with me: what happens when we release our perception into a conversation? It’s not the case that anything we say comes true. (Despite what Minnesota Senator Al Franken said as Stuart Smalley) But there is something in the mechanism of “saying aloud” that allows an audience to hear and respond. That audience may be other people. That audience may be the one speaking the words. Our audience can agree, disagree or whatever. But the words are out there, itching for response. Hearing our own explanations often has a much more profound effect on the speaker than anyone we are talking to. That’s why the teachers and professors I know all say they learn so much every time they teach a class.

My favorite leaders often use that mind-mouth connection to process out loud what the team is experiencing. It’s a kind of shop talk that results in meaning-making right in the work place. I can think of several of those out-loud-processings from people I respected that changed my perception of an organization or situation forever.

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Written by kirkistan

December 17, 2012 at 10:01 am

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