“Tribes: We Need You to Lead Us”
by Seth Godin
The element of fear alone is so powerful that it can prevent us from taking charge of a situation, group or even of our own destiny. The fear of being criticized, the fear of not being right, or just fear itself. I want to remind you, however, that although inaction may give you the advantage of avoiding criticism and especially avoiding being wrong, it also guarantees that you will never achieve anything. And as Seth Godin points out on the dust jacket of his book: “The proof is here.” The power is here. The only thing holding you back is your fear. Not easy to admit, but essential to understand. “People may inspire you, but they can’t act in your place. The responsibility to take action ultimately remains your own.
Each one of us can help shape or even change the world that we live in. While it is not meant for everyone to be a leader, all of us can and should contribute to our full potential, whatever it may be. However, despite my previous statement, you must never believe that leadership is only for others. The democratization of modern leadership which I refer to, and for which the book gives several good examples, demonstrates how there is more potential leaders today than ever before. All that’s left is for them to stand out. And this “them” in question could perhaps be “you”. Inspired by a phrase from JFK’s inaugural address: “Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country.” I therefore challenge you, hoping to make you aware of the importance of your involvement. So ask yourself: How can I get involved and take action in something that’s meaningful to me?
Since I always advocate that none has a right to complain unless they are willing to take action, I encourage you to do the same. If you feel challenged by a situation or by a certain cause, do not expect or wait for someone else to react, because it may well be that without you, nothing will happen. For example, it’s exactly what I did in my community as I found it deplorable that there was no organization promoting the Francophone language and culture. So instead of whining about it, I created and incorporated a non-profit French-speaking community-based organization called Franco-Phare, a tribe in itself, which continues to exist long after my departure in 2008. The establishment of this tribe was not an easy task, since I had no idea what it would involve in itself or where to start. But by inspiring others to join me, we succeeded. How about you, is there something that challenges you personally? Have you found a calling yet?
To get back to the main idea, why after reading “Tribes” did I decided to create the reflecting tribe? Clearly, it was so that I may become that leader of change that Seth Godin promotes. But even more importantly, I decided to start this blog in order to fuel reflecting minds and to act as a catalyst hopefully awakening in each one of you the desire to change, act and ultimately lead!
“Tribes” aspires therefore to make us all realize that it is easier than ever to get involved, even easier than you may have thought. I’m certain that this brief reading, only 147 pages, will inspire you even more.
Note: I would like to thank Chantal for her truly intended gift. As you all know by now, this reading has inspired the creation of my blog, the first step towards my “true self” in the making. Chantal, your friendship is inspiring. A big thank you