Monday, August 11, 2014

Quote-A-Day: Day 223

An idea without a voice helps no one.  Never be afraid to speak your mind. #QuoteADay #Day223 #edchat #edu #SpeakUp

I’ll be the first to admit that I don’t have a problem speaking my mind.  Unfortunately, I probably could use a better filter from time-to-time, but I’m working on that.

But just because I can’t keep my mouth shut, doesn’t mean everyone is comfortable voicing ideas and opinions.

But we have to be.

Nobody can speak our minds but us.  In fact, if we constantly hold ourselves back, we may never get to realize all that we are capable of.  While it is challenging to work with those who always have to speak, it is just as challenging to work with those who never say what they’re thinking.

As we learn and lead, we need to create communities where everyone, regardless of role, not only has the opportunity to speak, but takes that opportunity. 

Voices that are kept to ourselves are voices that never have the chance to help others learn.

Want to increase the varied voice of your community?

First, model taking turns as both a speaker and a listener.  Be clearly comfortable with both roles.

Second, encourage (read: slightly force) everyone to “say” something.  You can use a “ticket out the door” strategy (either verbally or written), or for those who are not yet at that stage, a simple “fist to five” works too.

Finally, act on what others say.  If people are going to take a risk and share their thoughts, you need to do something with them.

We all have important voices.  And, our voices all have important things to say.  We need to make sure that we use those voices regularly, so that others can lead and learn through them.

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