“Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.” – Benjamin Franklin
What is the real difference between telling, teaching, and involving? Why is it important? What is the underlying principle Ben Franklin was trying to share when someone captured this quote? If we could bring Ben into a room to talk to us, how do you suppose he might try to express the differences between each of these methods?
Let’s begin with the first element of telling. Telling, as used to simply make information known with speech or writing, is a way to give an account of facts, news, or information. We have all been on the receiving end of someone at some time who was telling us something we may or may not have really been paying attention to… Think of a professor in a lecture hall who was regurgitating information from a text book…
There is a saying by Jim Rohn that says “To teach is to learn twice.” He goes on to say that when sharing information, both student and teacher are affected in the process. When the teacher shares, the student is affected and in the process of sharing, so is the teacher. Mr. Rohn was a great storyteller. He had a way to pull you into the conversation and get you involved. He repeated key concepts, spoke slowly, annunciated clearly, and always gave prompts to encourage capturing the key concepts he shared.
He took teaching to the next level by continuously asking powerful questions and encouraging his audience not to believe him, but to investigate on their own as well. When discussing philosophy for example as it relates to persistence, he uses the ant to drive home the point. He asks us to think back when we were curious children and remember what we saw the ants doing. He asks what happens when you place an object in the path of an ant? What does the ant do? How does the ant deal with the “obstacle?” An ant will always go around, over, or through any obstacle placed in front of them. He then asks, and how long do you suppose an ant will try? The ant will try until. Until when? Until they succeed, period! He then asks, what do you suppose might be the lesson here for us as it relates to the ants?
Remember, Involve me, and I learn!
Author: Bobby Kountz
Bobby Kountz is a former Oncology Nurse, a seasoned Oncology Sales Professional, and Personal Development Enthusiast. He is also an Inspirational Writer, Professional Speaker, Personal Development and Career Transition Coach, Dedicated Community Volunteer, Social Equality Activist, Mental Health Activist, and Loving Father and Husband.
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