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Blockchain 4 of 7 : Learn to Listen, Listen to Learn

My brother-in-law and I get together for breakfast usually once a week.  This past Monday morning was no different than any other Monday.  We talked about work, family and our favorite topic, fishing, over a plate of eggs, bacon, hash browns and coffee.  I was sharing about how frustrating it is to watch someone engage before they have all the information.  Trying to fix a problem before they even understand what’s wrong.  Or worse, trying to fix something that doesn’t need to be fixed.  My B-I-L flipped his paper place mat over and wrote down, “Learn to Listen, Listen to Learn”.  I said, “Wow … how appropriate”! I felt a little convicted because this truth applies in all areas of my life both personally and professionally.


The word “shama’” is a primitive root in the Hebrew language.  Although primitive, it is rich in meaning.  The short meaning is to “Hear Intelligently” and has been rendered in the English as “attentive”, “consider”, “diligent”, “discern”, “perceive”, “understand” and to “witness”.  Shama’s depth is incredible.  Another old friend taught me that information is a commodity!  If I want to be most effective as a solutions architect, I must understand the value of information and deposit as much of that commodity as possible into my understanding.   That only comes by shama’ … listening intelligently. 

I want to weave this into a practical application in the blockchain discussion.  This concept deals mostly in supporting the transformation of the line of business’ application portfolio by leveraging emerging tech. The last article dealt with educating the stakeholders so that they can engage in the decision-making process.  Now that they have an understanding of the benefits of blockchain, it’s time to let them digest what I've presented, ask questions and express whatever they feel compelled to express. It is time for me to “hear intelligently”. I can not avoid the fact that they understand the business if the business.  Tech is great, but tech doesn’t drive the business .. the business must drive the tech!  This is a tremendous opportunity to learn and tune my solution for success.

Now that I have declared this emerging technology as “qualified”, I need to prepare myself to present the endeavor to gain Sr. Leadership approval for “pursuit”.  It’s time to collect, consolidate and arrange all details that will compel management to invest the resources and effort. There are so many blockchain solutions out there and a tremendous amount of information to digest before I am ready to make my presentation.  Time to do a deep dive and shred!

My ability to listen just might make the difference between pursuit or no-pursuit. And, when I listen, I practice Shama’!

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