The Wisdom from Outside

The Wisdom From Outside

It’s always interesting to see how persuasion occurs. How do you convince someone of something they don’t believe in currently?

I saw this growing up. I’d often have discussions with friends or family and I would try to make a point. “Really, Garth Brooks is the biggest selling artist of the 90s”

Before Wikipedia, it was hard to solve these debates. People wouldn’t agree with me and it would go on.

But often I saw that occasionally they would change their mind. And it wasn’t because of me. But because someone else.someone from the outside….had said something to confirm my statement. And people would just change their mind and not give me credit.

Which is fine. But is the first time I saw “the wisdom from outside.”

Often it takes someone from the outside to come into an organization, an agency, or a team to confirm what someone on the team already knows and is trying to get implemented.

It seems silly but it works.

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Sam Allgood

I too have seen it to be a consistent thing that family and friends close to you are not willing to change their mind when in disagreement with you until they hear it confirmed by someone who is perceived to have appropriate credentials.

Stephen Buckley

Steve —

That which you call “baked in”? It’s called “pride”.

Your peers (or family, friends, etc.) would have to admit that YOU saw something that THEY did not see. And people, even those with normal egos, are naturally defensive about admitting their weaknesses.

About 15 years ago, a very intelligent, successful (and proud) person said to me that “If the Internet can do all the things that you say, then why haven’t I heard about it already?”

He just did not want to admit that I knew about something “really big” .. and that he did not. Nobody wants to be seen (even to themselves) as someone “out of the loop”.

They get themselves out of that dilemma by saying that, yes, only the Outsider (e.g., the Guru) could have seen this.

It’s the reason that organizations hire consultants instead of learning to listen to their own people. That’s because the leadership doesn’t have the Humility needed to admit that they don’t listen — really listen — to their own people.

And, that is what “open government” is supposed to be about. Listening to the people “out there”. But the hard part is that it takes a big dollop of Humility … something that is not only discouraged, but often penalized, in government .. especially in Washington.

And also (and ironically) scarce in many Gov2.0 discussions.