“Stephanie, you’d be more successful if you embraced your ‘I don’t know’ persona.”

This was feedback I got last year that rattled me. It felt like a gut punch.

What do you mean my “I don’t know” persona? I’m a strategic planner. I make a living out of knowing the right answers.

Fast forward a year later. I’m realizing that I don’t really know much, and that’s OK.

In all of the strategic plans I have helped organizations create, there was never any planning for a global pandemic like this one. Who could fathom that hundreds of thousands of people could die from a virus within months and that the global economy would come to a screeching halt? Or that the Earth could heal itself so rapidly when humans stay home?

In the midst of this pandemic, I’m getting to know my formerly repressed “I don’t know” persona.

Would you like to meet her?

She’s curious and open to learning.
She laughs at herself.
She softens blame, judgment, and criticism (of herself and others).
She opens her heart even when she’s scared.
She asks, what is possible now that wasn’t fathomable 2 months ago?
Then she surrenders and listens.

What might emerge if you got to know your “I don’t know” persona? I’d like to meet that one in you, too.

Is your organization ready for a change?

Stephanie Blackburn Freeth is the creator of The Strategy Tango.


The Strategy Tango is designed to move through seven tried and true planning steps while also accommodating the unique needs of your organization in each moment.


The Strategy Tango process is built upon a foundation of collaboration, candor, and focus.

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