I’m a (nascent) practicing positive deviant..

The other day @janebozarth tweeted about a blog posting by John Stepper. John wrote about how trying to change the organization one works for will probably end in disappointment. I had got up to the part where he talks about persevering when I recalled some of the Positive Deviant (PD) tenets Jane had talked about in her Tips fo the Positive Deviant webinar, namely asking unscripted questions, not complaining, counting (anything) and writing.

So when my manager came up to me the other day with a list of archived webinars from the Training Magazine Network I couldn't help but become excited. He asked me go through the list (there seemed to be hundreds) and pick out a dozen webinars or so that I felt might help the training staff with their professional development.

I selected 17 webinars using the comments from Kirkpatrick Level 1 evaluations to suggest areas for improvement.
It doesn't end here of course. Since I started listening to podcasts from HBR, Stanford, TEDx and others I find on iTunes U I've started taking risks: coming up with ideas, writing, and so on. The other night on the way home from Roswell I learned whilst listening to an HBR Ideacast how REALLY effective brainstorming happens while you're alone. So I came up with an idea about how the curriculum where I work doesn't include anything on the organization's culture. When I mentioned it to my manager he seemed excited. Some time later he came back and said “Oh, about that idea: I told everyone at HQ about it. Have a paper on my desk by next Wednesday.”
So maybe I'm experiencing one of the periods of joy Stepper writes about in his post. I can't wait for the inevitable lows he says are coming. Innovation and creativity thrive, I've learned, during period of adversity.
Who knew?


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