Book smart vs. Street smart

picture of donald trumpIf there's someone I feel indifferent about, it is Donald Trump . His self-inundated series The Apprentice holds very little excitement for me besides his whimsical "you're fired" decisions and hoping the editors slip in a snippet of his hair catching sail in a gust of wind.

The latest season showing here in South Africa is The Apprentice 3: Books Smarts versus Street Smarts. Having previously pitted the sexes against each other, he now has those with Ivy League college educations battling it out against those with no formal education.

It's a classic plot that plays out in businesses and professions everyday. In my own field of organisational development, group facilitation and narrative, there are those of us who were trained and studied formally, while there are those who have been facilitating out of a passion and gifting that has emerged over time in their careers.

cross cultural conversations

I sat with one such street smart the other day, Carel Wandrag . He's currently a Valuation Actuary at Sanlam who is also forging ahead with addressing diversity in organisations through his Cross Cultural Conversations. An Acturay who facilitates discussions? Yep, I was pretty skeptical! It doesn't look like much when you see his web presence, but sit with him over a meal and you can hear the passion and spirit he brings to conversations. I recommend connecting with him.

Another street smart who I enjoy working with is Barrie Bramley who has a knack for doing the theory without even knowing it.

Unlike Trump's underlings, there is a wonderful potential for collaboration between the street and book smarts.



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