Summary: Seth Godin's 'Tribes: We Need You to Lead Us'
By Rolf Dobelli, Chairman, getAbstract
British novelist Elizabeth Jane Howard once said, "Call it a clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, call it a family: Whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one." Best-selling author and Squidoo.com founder Seth Godin concurs. He explains why you should act on your lifelong dreams. He focuses on leadership - how to gather fellow believers, build them into a tribe and achieve outsized results - and discusses ways to use social media to launch your tribal movement.
Godin does a great job of identifying the negative mental and spiritual habits people use to excuse inertia. He explains how to become the leader that your tribe - and the rest of the world - needs. Becoming such a leader, being charismatic, being positive and being active are all choices you make, Godin says, not gifts you receive. Although he falls into some of his usual hyperbole and repetition, getAbstract finds that Godin's points are well-taken and encouraging. He provides real-world examples of people who have seized upon seemingly crazy ideas, the fruits of their joys and passions, and made them work successfully. You can do the same: Shine a light, build a tribe and make a difference.
Yes, You Can Create and Lead a Tribe
Human beings have gathered in tribes for millions of years, but the dawn of the Internet era allows tribes to form and coordinate more easily than ever. Do you band with others based on your hobbies, professional interests, political persuasion, community projects or technical vision? If so, you have joined various tribes. Tribes can be large or small, but each one must focus on a purpose. Successful tribes have passionate, committed leaders who serve the tribe before they think of themselves. Each member provides an aspect of tribal leadership, which centers far more on vision than on mere business management. By definition, "a tribe is a group of people connected to one another, connected to a leader and connected to an idea." To become a tribe, people need only "a shared interest and a way to communicate."
Use your passion to make a contribution. Become a leader who improves the world by heading a tribe that can implement and spread your vision. This far-from-perfect world needs your help and so does your tribe. Step forward.
Creating Your Movement
Membership in the tribe you lead is voluntary. If you rule like a monarch, you may find yourself sitting on the throne of an empty kingdom. Too many tribal leaders think they should create stable organizations, but a tribe's very existence is an argument against the status quo. Tribal membership should be dynamic, partisan and noisy. Use all the levels of communication available in your tribe. Listen to your members and show them that you respect them. To improve and expand your tribe, communicate clearly in four directions: "leader to tribe, tribe to leader, tribe member to tribe member" and "tribe member to outsider."
If your tribe pursues a goal, your attitude as a leader matters a lot more than another person's sense of authority or greater number of followers...
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