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Wednesday, June 28, 2006


Back Again

So I returned, then disappeared again. Any of my readers who have issues around needing me to be predictable have probably decamped permanently by now. But for those of you who are still hanging out, chilling, I am back again for a week or so before my next excellent adventure.

This time I was back on my leadership program, grooving with the Deer as we climbed enormous trees and yelled and cried and laughed and danced our way into a new understanding. This retreat was number 2 of 4, and focused on creating from other - very big learning curve for me.

The way my dear friend Dr. Jane explained it to me, there is a theory of old-school group work that says the group will perform at a level slightly below that of the most competent member. Her suspicion was that I was often the most competent member, leading me to conclude quite logically that I could have done the whole project better by myself, a lot faster, and with a lot less hassle. The rest of the group would be happy and want to work with me again. I ran away as fast as I could from these people and started doing my own thing.

The work we did at this retreat gave me a whole new perspective about groups and it is exciting the hell out of me. The structure made it abundantly clear, again and again, that I could go farther with someone else than I could by myself, farther than I even dreamed possible. This is what my coach meant by meeting people where they are. I finally got it. In order to find out where they are, I have to get over there with them, ignoring me for a while, because I know where I am. Not sure if this makes sense to anyone else!

Mainly I want to point out that this is GOOD NEWS, especially because I have a big job to do, and it's going to get done much better and faster now that I can understand how to get help with it. On some level, my improv experience has taught me this before. But now I simply cannot ignore its application in my life.

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It makes perfect sense.

In terms of IQ, heterogeneous groups fall prey to the " free rider" problem where the brightest person contributes the most and receives the least stimulus. After a while, this experience gets rather old for gifted students.

Homogenous gifted groups,OTOH are the rationale for gifted programs - the opportunity to work and bounce ideas off peers of equal or greater ability. Theoretical physics, for example, makes most of its progress that way ( and one reason why the Germans with their single " star" Heisenberg, never came close to making the bomb while the Allies with Bohr, Fermi, Szilard etc. did)

Homogenous ability level but different fields of expertise are even better for creative thinking.
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