30 Day Brainstorm Challenge – Day 25: Is it Hoarding?

It’s day 25 of our 30 Day Brainstorm Challenge – Is it Hoarding?

Yesterday, I saw this t-shirt and I had a little laugh. “It isn’t actually hoarding if your stuff is really cool.”  It described every sibling relationship I knew. It’s my stuff, it’s cool and you can’t touch it. Sound familiar? I did to me, and as an oldest child, I can assure you that directive was given to my siblings on more than one occasion, as I kept my barbies all safe and tucked away in my Barbie Airplane (which was so cool, it went with me most places, this must have been the beginning of my love of travel)


However, now we are adults, and it’s not so cool to hoard your stuff. We see many examples of people hoarding, from wealth to resources. Let’s take a closer look at hoarding – here is the official definition from dictionary.com

Noun: A supply or accumulation that is hidden or carefully guarded for preservation.

Verb: To accumulate for preservation, future use, etc, in a hidden or carefully guarded place.

This reminds me of an oft quoted phrase in regards to content curation: Collecting knowledge or information is good, but unless you share it – it’s hoarding. We’ve all experienced this hoarding of knowledge in the workplace. Supervisors who want control of information. It’s theirs. To share would mean to give up power in some way. We see it in other professionals, the knowledge is mine – to share would mean to possibly give an advantage to an adversary. What is ironic, that as much as L&D professionals bemoan the lack of sharing within the industry, there are still plenty of people who don’t share – not necessarily because they want control, or have visions of gaining a competitive advantage but in some cases, they do not view themselves as being important contributors to the L&D conversation.

The voices in our head

We have all read the posts, articles, etc, of others stating the importance of sharing our work, and working out loud. All of this is true. Sharing your work and working out loud will help to propel the industry forward. We live in a time where sharing is easier than ever but the one thing we cannot change is mindset. If people do not feel they have value, or if they feel their work does not make a difference, then what? I don’t know if I have an answer to this issue. All I can do is encourage people to connect with others, watch, learn and reach out. Understand your voice has value, and your thoughts are important. Find a forum to share your voice, be it the “Work Out Loud” Facebook group, or the groups you are a part of on LinkedIn. It starts with you jumping into the water.

Then to others who are not suffering from impostor syndrome…it’s time to stop the hoarding and professional selfishness.  There are so many wonderful and successful people out there who share resources and time without thought of what they would get in return.  Their sharing of thoughts and ideas doesn’t make them any less competitive or successful. In fact, I’d argue it makes them even more so.

I’ll leave it here

If you know of someone who is in need of a psychological boost – give them a hand. We all, from time to time, fall into the pits of self-doubt – it can be crippling. If you are person who has a tendency to not share your work, or your resources, either with other team members or those within your professional industry…ask yourself why? Power, greed, competitive advantage? Do you think your stuff is too cool to share? I’d ask you to rethink and reconsider. When we help one, we help all.


NO! It’s not too late to join! See the original 30 Day Brainstorm Challenge post here

See previous post: Day 23: The Human Family

Check out the variety of participants and their challenge entries on the Learning Rebels Facebook page here

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Shannon Tipton

Shannon Tipton

As Owner of Learning Rebels, Shannon Tipton is a skilled learning strategist, content developer and International speaker. Shannon has over 20 years of leadership experience developing successful learning strategies and infrastructures for training departments within organizations in North America, Europe and Korea.

Shannon works with people and organizations to develop learning solutions that brings actual business results. Recognized as bringing real-world expertise into the learning field, Shannon integrates technologies and social learning tools to strengthen workplace alignment, enhance collaboration and increase learning connectivity.

As author of “Disruptive Learning” Shannon frequently speaking at conferences across North America and Europe and ranks as one of the top 100 L&D influencers on Twitter (@stipton).

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