#Improvisation still matters if you set out to solve interesting problems. – Seth Godin
This tweet has caused me a lot of consternation since I first saw it. I keep going over it in my head, trying to figure out if I agree with it or not. I admit to being a devotee of Seth Godin, so the mere thought of not agreeing 100% with a thought of Seth Godin is enough to rattle my faith.
Too over the top? 🙂
In reality, I am trying to understand the deeper point Godin is trying to make. I work hard to make my lists, complete the tasks on the lists, and cross off the items on the lists. I think planning is a good thing for school improvement, packing, writing a dissertation, and most of the other activities in my professional and personal lives.
So why does the idea of improvisation bring a smile to my face? Could it be that I remember the zaniness of improvisation from my high school speech days? Those grand opportunities to just cut loose and see how far we could push ourselves with a few ideas? I think so.
I think with the multitude and magnitude of problems in education, it is time for a little improvisation. We have tried to plan our way out of the “box”. Perhaps, we can improvise our way out. Perhaps, we can see the situation as something other (and easier to address) than the “box”. Perhaps, we need a level of thinking different to solve the problem than we had when we created the problem. (Thanks to Einstein for that quote.)
Improvisation allows us to create spontaneously in new ways. We need more of that in education, in business, in life. We need a few ideas and a great partner, and who knows what we will discover – or solve.
P.S. I made it to the state speech contest for improvisation in high school. I might just know what I am talking about.