Man in blue suit standing in front of 5 news mics - Get Some Perspective

Get Some Perspective

Your perspective is influenced continuously. Are you paying attention? Where do your inputs come from?

I like to ask audiences, “What is your primary source of news?” The image below is a word cloud drawn from anonymous input from a large audience of senior defense officials stationed around the world. They could not see the word cloud as it was built, so the image reflects their input at a moment in time, just them responding with their phone using Mentimeter.

Gene Moran News Word Cloud

When I ask the same question of a live audience and write their answers on a flip chart, the responses are much more guarded. Nobody wants to risk judgment by their peers.

Learning from others is a time-tested method of accelerating one’s learning.

Unfortunately, most of our networks are too homogenous to make a difference in learning. So, we self-select for our news inputs on world events. In the privacy of our homes, we watch what we want. Are you doing so with intention?

Books are another great way to learn from others. We’re only limited by our imagination and ability to devote the time to reading or listening to books. Most Americans do not complete a single book in a year. 

Walk through congressional offices, and you’ll notice office televisions tuned into an ideological perspective with which the member aligns: conservative, liberal, or even party-run. Yes, there is a Democrat and Republican feed in Congress.

Walk through the Pentagon, and you’ll notice a bit less diversity of inputs using this metric. Fox News outlets are the number one cable news channel by measure of audience size.

Ask people about their news sources and allow them to provide anonymous input, and the picture will be a fair representation.

I write and speak about how my perspectives on industry and professional fulfillment change over time. Make Your Move shares my story of transition from active duty through corporate and into independent consulting and advisory work. Perspectives only change when you allow new ones a point of entry.

This post conveys no judgment. I ask you to reflect on your own input.

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