With a bow to Stephen R. Covey (The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. New York: Simon & Schuster, 1989) I’d like to depart slightly from the suggestion that we “begin with the end in mind.”
I depart not because I disagree with informing the present with a notion of a desired future, but because I take the future to be exactly that, a notion, and thus focus more on the journey, carried out in the present moment, than on the imagined end.
Of Learn-Do-Teach-Lead (the practice, not the blog), there is no end. We find, instead—and here we leap ahead a bit—that it is a many layered, recursive, and self-reinforcing practice.
Our end notion is the maturation of the self-aware individual (or group of individuals) who applies Learn-Do-Teach-Lead both to any given issue at hand and to itself.
When turned upon itself, we must learn, do, teach, and lead Learn-Do-Teach-Lead.
The logical permutations spin out as follows:
- We must learn to learn.
- We must learn to do.
- We must learn to teach.
- We must learn to lead.
- We must do learning.
- We must do doing.
- We must do teaching.
- We must do leading.
- We must teach learning.
- We must teach doing.
- We must teach teaching.
- We must teach leading.
- We must lead learning.
- We must lead doing.
- We must lead teaching.
- We must lead leading.
While the resulting English sentences may sound a bit strained (e.g., what is it to “do doing” if not simply “to do”?), they each point to a necessary awareness of and for the correlated action.
And if we have awareness, then we can in fact begin with the end in mind.