On listening, critical thinking, and doing what we don’t feel like doing


Happy 5W-1h Sunday.

Here’s your dose of What? Who? Where? When? Why? How?, a curation of articles, podcasts and videos that piqued my curiosity this week.


WHAT don’t I feel like doing?

It doesn’t take much to be yourself. You just need to have enough confidence to disclose your true feelings, with sufficient guts to bounce back from personal rejection. On the face of it, being your true self sounds good. But you’re not a professional If you do your best work by being your true self, you’re a lucky amateur.

Doing what we don’t feel like doing | Joe Newbert (Text at Newbert’s Blog)

WHO are we designing this for?

While using customer journeys to guide what teams build and how they operate is common practice, small differences in approach produce vastly different results. But today, as we enter a new stage of profound change, those differences will be more important than ever to business performance.

Designing Customer Journeys for the Post-Pandemic World | Gene Cornfield (Text at Harvard Business Review)

WHERE can I be thinking more critically?

Critical thinking is about cutting through the noise to find the truth. It’s about using experience, observation and logic to guide your decisions and beliefs. But, when you’re bombarded with lots of information, or if emotions are running high, it can be hard to think rationally.

What Is Critical Thinking? | Mind Tools (Video at MindTools)

WHEN am I being a thought leader?

If you have the attention of an audience, you’re already a leader. And great leaders plan, listen, observe, inspire, and then give direction. But most of all they continue to demonstrate, in this case by freely sharing their valuable knowledge. The likeable expert demonstrates in order to achieve leadership, but also to maintain it.

Thought Leadership Is a Synonym for Attention | Brian Clark (Text at Copyblogger)

WHY do they want that?

When looking to improve existing processes, it’s very easy to get caught up in thinking too much about the format of the information and focus on improving the channel of communication, instead of asking the fundamental question “why is this information required, and what is the recipient going to do with it?”.

Don’t Forget The “Why”: What A Fax Machine Taught Me About Process Improvement | Adrian Reed (Text at BA Times)

HOW can I be a better listener?

True attentive listening is powerful and arduous. I’m not a great listener, so to help me do a better job, I wrote a Manifesto for Listening. Of course, to listen, I have to fall quiet. Just a few days ago, I realized that word “silent” has the same letters as the word “listen,” rearranged. Did everyone else know this?

To Help Me Do A Better Job, I Made a “Manifesto of Listening.” What Did I Miss? | Gretchen Rubin (Text at Gretchen Rubin)

And, as always, please give feedback on Twitter. Whose piece above stood out for you? What would you like more or less of? Other ideas? Please let me know. Just send a tweet to @joenewbert and put #5W1H at the end so I can find it.

Keep growing.


P.S. What’s your biggest career fear?