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Constant learning with creative acquisition

Nguyen Than Thuy Linh

A fruitful day with SoG


Morning & Lunch reflection:

There is unique thing at School of Gumption that is the interaction and growth happening all the time beyond the working hours. We have lunch together and go to some meetings or meetings together that means we can frequently talk and listen to one another as such close family members. I have never experienced the stressful atmosphere at School of Gumption but the comfortable and funny dialogue. Here are some interesting things discussed at lunch:


1. One of the contributing factors to why some services in Singapore fail to take off is the lack of users' need understanding. For example, the service of sharing houses/cars did not manage to reach out users is because the service does not get people’s interest and need. Probably, the inventors put so much effort focusing on and developing the idea instead of the users' need. Steven emphasized the importance of psychological element in business approach to engage human. Additionally, one outstanding point of design thinking is user-centric approach that is called "Empathize".


2. Sleep is extremely important to human. Some people underestimate this cruciality for being too busy or the thought of having weekend sleeping compensation. Each person has their own biological clock and sleeping habit. We do not know what our biological clock is because sometimes, we might have enough sleeping hours and get up with a sleepy mood. Sometimes, we sleep only 4 hours yet can be energetic all day long afterwards! However, this spontaneous moments are not always happening and we cannot predict when this kind of pattern occurs. The best way for us to stay healthy is to try all ways to understand ourselves and shape the most reasonable habit according to our personal state of health and life.


3. As long as we have the passion for something, we can be totally dedicated to the thing with strong commitment and seeing gains even without financial return. Every Tuesday, Liu Yan volunteers to translate some materials related to Buddhism tasked by her professor that has been for 2 years. I am strongly inspired by her initiative to learn and to devote to the work that is free of charge. However, we might not get back financial resource for what we do, to a certain extent, we still need to earn intellectual or social capital that act as the value paid for our value.


Afternoon reflection:

In the afternoon, I got a new exciting task that is to create a list of useful resources that provide information, news, or videos related to SoG’s such as Economy 4.0, 6C, Intelligence 4.0,…I figured out how to collect all the links posted on the Facebook wall that are usually not available in our personal account unless we have to dig up the whole timeline. I spent the entire afternoon immersing in the inspiring articles and videos. I did not intentionally read so many links when the target is to make a resource tab for SoG website where people can come and get more educational stuff to learn about SoG-related knowledge. Over 2 articles, I began engaging in all pieces of links for their meaningful and provoking messages which are pretty relevant to my current time. The social enterprise mindset, how we understand business, how to solve problems,…There is 2 outstanding topics that evokes my concern:


1. Key paradigm shifts that are needed in education:

- Instead of teaching how to find the correct answers, focus on teaching how to ask the correct questions.

- Instead of celebrating success, celebrate both success and failure, for failure is the mother of more success.

- Human is not a number. Stop assessing human potential by assigning them a number.

- Promote passion and curiosity, instead of passing and accuracy.

- Instead of focusing on the loss, focus on the gain of every experience.

- We are in the constant business of assessing students whether they can or they can't. Instead, we should only focus on the business of helping students to BELIEVE that they can.


2. Reductive Seduction

Reductive Seduction is the allure of solving the problems that you think are easy to be tackled. So many young people follow the trend of founding social enterprise but mostly run themselves into the ground.


- Chase for status/ fundraising achievement/ overstate the success of creating social impacts

- Solve problems FOR others rather than WITH others

- Solve problems that are assumed to be easily solved

- Don't take practical actions and listen to others/ the need of the people, at look at the complexity of the problems.

- Be incapable of sustaining the business and finance: don’t look at the long-term prospect of facing systemic complexity.

-Try to changing the cultural norms without cultural appropriate educational materials or trusted messengers


--> Resist yourself from reductive seduction of others' problem

--> Listen "hard" enough to others so that they could be their authentic selves.

--> Let's fall in love with complexity instead of solvability.



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