A large fluffy microphone arches in front of me, dangerously directed towards words that will tumble out across the airwaves, answering intriguing and thought provoking questions from my single companion inside a tiny box…
Recently I was invited to take part in an interview on a podcast called ‘Highcast’. The podcast is hosted by David Gorman and focuses on the wonder and beauty found in the community of the Southern Highlands of NSW. Dave is passionate about a lot of topics and in preparing to be interviewed by him I focused on all the things that he and I had in common, emergency management being one of them.
But when we got to interview time (I was number 046 in the series) he introduced the podcast and almost immediately the conversation took a very unexpected turn….
We talked about bees.
That’s right, bees.
As in the bumble variety.
The thing is, I don’t know much about bees at all, but Dave and I managed to talk about bees and the subsequent topic of sustainability for 52:34 minutes!
Dave recently celebrated 50 episodes of ‘Highcast’ and I joined him at a little soiree over the weekend to celebrate. There, I met some of the other interviewees and as I stood with beverage in hand, a thought struck me. Whilst we all had a core theme we had planned to talk about in our interviews, it was actually a secondary, deeper hidden topic that bubbled to the surface and created a completely unplanned conversation.
I met a firefighter who spoke about how he is learning the ancient art of leather craft to hand-make costumes for him and his wife to wear at medieval reenactments. There was also the man who has worked in early childhood care for 10 years but is also a high level Jiu Jitsu master. Then there was a professor of veterinary surgery who is an avid bee keeper, building his own hives and working hard to turn around the devastating decreases seen in bee colonies across the globe.
Meeting these people has given me a fascinating insight into the things that people are truly passionate about. It made me realise that often we only talk to people about the things we have in common, neglecting to ask deeper questions about what makes us different. This weekend I learnt far more about bees, and leather tooling and Jiu Jitsu simply by looking for the things I didn’t have in common with the other presenters.
Leadership Challenge – Imagine the great lessons that are potentially simmering beneath the surface of the people within your team? Find out something about each of your team members that has nothing to do with what you have in common.
You can listen to ‘Highcast’ through your usual podcast provider or at: