Posts tagged: dialogue

Beyond the Rockstar Paradigm


During a plenary at TWI grantee Interfaith Youth Core’s conference Interfaith Youth Work: “Leadership for a Religiously Diverse World”, I was struck by Representative Keith Ellison’s, 5th Congressional District of Minnesota,vehement statement: “let’s differentiate between leaders and leadership.” Clearly positional leaders can demonstrate very little leadership while those of us without positional authority can offer leadership at any moment. Think about the volunteer who, in June of 1963, acted to print 50,000 instead of 5,000 fliers for the march (an immense effort in pre-Kinko’s times) that eventually helped bring over a million people to hear MLK speak in the mall. Or the …   Read more

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Indepedent Sector's Future Lab: They Built It and They're Not Coming

By John EsterleI recently got another email from Independent Sector trying to solicit input and ideas for Future Lab: An Ongoing Challenge for the Nonprofit Community to Chart a Vibrant 2020. The Lab is a well-intentioned effort to promote online dialogue and collaborative thinking that IS has clearly devoted considerable time, energy, and money to. The Lab is one part of IS’ Envisioning Our Future initiative that was kicked off in July with their Strategy Lab convening in Colorado.Unfortunately, hardly anyone — including me — is taking up their invitation to participate online.My non-participation brings to mind my own recent post about the challenge of people not leaving comments on blogs. So why haven’t I participated? Here’s some of what …   Read more

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Social Media Storytelling: Seeing and Thinking Differently

By John EsterleContinuing the thread about the power of stories, check out Kari Dunn Saratovsky’s brief interview with Mark Horvath on the Social Citizens blog at The Case Foundation. It offers a brief, compelling, primer of how social media can be a powerful storytelling tool to make the invisible visible (in this case homelessness).Mark’s line about the importance of organizations losing their “lone ranger” mentality is instructive. What especially pops out for me are his comments about the value of helping people that think differently in terms of expanding your own thinking and increasing your impact in relation to the causes you’re standing up for. With that, he’s certainly preaching to the choir here at TWI. As …   Read more

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Inside Stories

By John EsterleIt seems more and more of us in the public benefit sector are thinking and talking about the power of stories to connect and inform, to spark dialogue and action, to shift perspectives and policy. And with this talk comes familiar questions: How do we tell our story? How do we get it out there? What will break through and stick in our media saturated environment?A new blog and podcast, Inside Stories, offers an intriguing and wide-ranging vehicle for exploring these and a host of storytelling related questions. In his introductory post and podcast, writer and researcher, Paul VanDeCarr, says:When I say “storytelling” I’m talking about everything from fairy tales, to psychotherapy, to sermons, to gossip, to …   Read more

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