Mind Mapping for A Deep Dive Into a Great Book
I found myself challenged with a book that I love recently. Sustained Leadership, by Thomas G Reid. JD, CScM, CPCM.
This book is well over 650 pages of dense text which to read from cover to cover can be quite daunting. I met Tom through social media on various Twitter Chats. He also runs a Twitter Chat on Monday nights at 7:00 p.m. called Impact Matters, which follows his book on leadership. I found myself intrigued regarding the leadership journey as an educator and psychotherapist. Of course, the topic of thought leadership is a very in vogue hashtag on Twitter. Instead of calling myself one, I thought I wanted to do a deep dive into the topic and study all the facets of leadership while investigating my own journey.
How to do this with a book that breaks leadership down to the minute detail?. Tom's in-depth study aides you to do this in various ways if you don't have the oxygen for a deep dive. His outline correlates with his website and he offers a free webinar series which is held monthly. So you can listen, read, and research this book through a variety of modalities. However being an educator and counselor, I am a process queen. So I wanted to process what leadership means for me and how I could map out my journey. The book outlines "How To Use The Sustained Leadership WBS." I suggest you check this out for your information as a way to begin reading this very extensive and thorough reference book on leadership.
Now, like Christmas do you read directions when they come out of the box? I simply dig in and then when I am convinced that I am helpless then I will surrender to open the manual. I liked looking at the section of where should I concentrate, so I did and voila it worked. Chapter 4 begins what Tom call's "The Sustained Leadership Project Plan." Hence, Chapter 4 takes you into specific traits, aspects, and qualities as a leader. I skimmed all the qualities which interested me to study and of course emulate or challenge. This was where the semantic mapping idea came to light as a way to create a vision of leadership which is tangible and visible while studying related concepts at a comfortable pace.
Semantic Mapping Introduction: Semantic Mapp is a strategy for graphically representing concepts. A semantic word map allows readers to conceptually explore their knowledge of a new word by mapping it with other related words or phrases similar in meaning to the new word. There are three components to a semantic map:
- 1. Core question or concept: this is a keyword or phrase that is the main focus of the map.
- 2. Strands: subordinate ideas that help explain or clarify the main concept. These can be generated by the reader.
- 3. Supporting information: details, inferences, and generalization that are related to each strand. Supports clarify the strands and distinguish one strand from another.
Before reading a passage or selection, preview the text for challenging words you will use and see often throughout the book.
I circled all the leadership qualities which appealed to me and those which I thought I exhibit as a leader. I then brainstormed about my own background knowledge and made connections between what I assumed and what I projected to learn while reading.
This includes generating logical category titles and placing words in appropriate categories. I selected a mind mapping app which I will outline below. The app website is at the end of this post.
I recommend skimming chapters, quotes, and words you associate with this list and add these words to your word families. I then placed all these concepts related to the outline guide with the map to yield an outline for reading specific passages or chapter sections.
The semantic map might be expanded or reorganized to reflect new information as you read and reflect. Below is a partial mapping I started as an example. There are dozens of versions of semantic mapping and mind mapping. I googled the one with a desktop file that can convert to an image file. I welcome any feedback on this blog post and information posted here.
I will be sharing differing literacy strategies and educational concepts to deal with written or digital information. I think Tom's book is the perfect reference and go to text to address your personal leadership journey. Given the gaping crevasse in leadership qualities, don't we all want to pay it forward in our communities with the best of our leadership qualities?
Technology Tip Mind mapping tools could be used to represent the semantic map used in this strategy. Below are examples of some free mind mapping tools: