Giving, Getting, or Being the Inside Scoop


Which one would you prefer?

I asked the question a couple of days ago both on Twitter and in G+ and the responses where evenly split among the first two. The third was a suggestion voted in by the community on G+, namely being the inside scoop.

Most of us have an immediate gut reaction to dualistic kinds of questions — yes and no, either/or, this or that, fight or flight.

Once we start defining the question in more specific terms, our likely choice crystallizes:

  • giving news about gifts to children for Christmas
  • getting new information about a deep tissue massage
  • giving very bad news to a person you care about
  • getting a controversial review in a prominent publication

When it comes to reviews, for example, is giving one easier than getting one? Does it depend on its nature? Maybe, partly on the nature of the person doing the giving? How about the one who's getting it? Does your answer change if we're talking about the review of your book vs. the review of your work?

If your answer was / is "it depends", you're thinking in more modern and contemporary terms: It's a choice we're called to make in different situations, at different times, with varying degrees of information at our fingertips.

The answer depends on your focus.

For example, this week, we talked about:

  • best bang for the buck — where an undefined question made me think about another question that is usually asked without definition
  • top business trends — where I pointed out that the other side of the trend coin is case studies. Which are trends seen in the rear view mirror
  • trick or trade? — where the things that scare business people the most are the same that hold the most opportunity for them
  • 34 ways to spread your ideas with a blog — where I concluded that with all its promise, blogging is no substitute for doing. It is a complement to it
  • commerce and creativity — where I said when you cannot make your social media programs work it means you don't know (yet) what the business trades
  • Google draws content and sharing together — where I pointed out that it's not just the seller's strategy we need to examine. We also need to question the buyer's strategy to do good trade

I'm fascinated by these kinds of questions because, more often than not, we live in a both/and world. It's the big ideas and the small gestures, vision and leadership and working in the background as supporting actor, moments of joy years in the making.

That's how you get to be the inside scoop.

Chocolate and pistachio for me. Who can tell me what those two towers mean?


[image courtesy of Wikipedia]

0 responses to “Giving, Getting, or Being the Inside Scoop”

  1. Oy. Am I becoming dyslexic? All morning, I’ve had this tab open and thinking it read: Getting, Giving, or Being Inside the Scoop. I blame the ice cream! 🙂
    One of the oldest sales tricks in the book is the “alternate advance” question. Given a choice between yes or no, backing out is a piece of cake.
    Would you like to buy an encyclopedia set?
    The alternate advance, then, is posing multiple options, any of which would be desirable.
    Would you prefer the encyclopedia set or the leather-bound dictionary?
    The trap, however, is when such thinking results in our viewing our options as either-or, when AND is so powerful.
    One of the things I’ve been trying to work on, personally, is how to break free from either-or thinking. Why should I choose between getting, giving, or being the scoop? How do I go about becoming all three?

  2. Another way it is a false choice: both options may be irrelevant to what we’re looking to do/focusing on.
    So much of the current recycled conversation is about debunking things that are not even relevant.

  3. Absolutely. Sadly, a reflection on the human condition these days. As if proving others wrong in any way makes us right, ya know?
    And you’re going to have to come clean on the tower cookies. I know there’s a story to them, even to the point of thinking I’ve had someone explain it to me before (when serving them to me), but the Googles! They do nothing! 😛

  4. I’m not sure it’s easier,
    Binary or logocentric reasoning has been a feature of western conversation since Plato. In that regard its not a new feature of the human condition. But still sad.
    Agree there are much more important things to do than legitimize bad ideas by arguing with them.
    But the work of ideas is not painless. In my view, it is work that should be ligitimised as well as listening without judgement. It too is sad we are so quick to judge. Can we tell great art when there are only a few strokes on the canvass?

  5. Well, first of all, I am a sucker for line weight and brush stroke, so it’s not uncommon for me to become fascinated with art consisting of a few strokes. “Great art” is subjective and personal – that’s where the real greatness lies.
    As for the binary/logocentric being nothing new, I wonder how the internet has contributed and if small groups of new-thinking people might tap that power to affect a fundamental change.
    Our current economic problems stem from reliance upon industrial revolution, semi-feudal principles. There is a movement to shift that thinking, but how might our view of “others” be psychologically ingrained over the last 1,500 years?
    If we have made the environment, after all…
    Good chat. Thanks!

  6. Without being too arty – the towers are the most visible part, but only an afterthought to the “foundation” into which they are stuck.
    In this case, the “scoops” ironically enough are the substance. Without that substance, you’ll never BE the “inside scoop” and relegated to giving or getting them!
    (On the other hand, as you point out in the end, both elements are necessary for a more pleasing overall package.)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *