I’ve been thinking about the terminology that we use to describe our relationships on various social networks. I “follow” people on Twitter and people “follow” me back. I have “friends” on Facebook. I am “linked” to people on LinkedIn. The “follow” relationship is the one I find most fascinating.
When you “follow” someone, you:
Accept them as a guide or leader
Imitate or follow their example
Watch their movement or progress
While I understand that my “followers” on Twitter probably don’t see me as a leader, there are certainly people on Twitter who I “follow” because I consider them thought leaders and I want to know what they’re reading and thinking. Think about it. We never say that we “follow” a Web site, company or newsletter, but we do say that we “follow” someone’s blog. I know I consider it a high compliment when someone tells me that they “follow” my blog.
In the book Tribes, marketing guru Seth Godin tells us it’s human nature to want to be part of a group that shares a common passion and recognizes the same leader; in other words, most of us want to be part of a tribe. Further, Seth believes that using the Web and social networking tools, everyone can now find or assemble a tribe and lead it.
So I say to each of you and your organizations: People want to follow, are you ready to lead?
I have two friends who have walked the Camino del Santiago. The friends are Peter Schwartz, who is my business coach, and Gordon Bernhardt, a member of my CEO peer group. Both of them did the French route, which takes you from St Jean Pied de Port to Santiago de Compostela. It's a 500-mile journey that you do on foot over...
Our online identities are, unfortunately, not in our control. The internet was created for communication between computers, but our presence as individuals on the internet is less formally defined. We create online accounts and over time we may forget they exist, if we haven’t already forgotten our passwords. Technology advocates argue that we need an identity layer for the internet. We...
Google for leadership lessons from the martial arts and you’ll get a jillion posts. Most of them focus on skills you’ll develop from practicing the martial arts. Skills like focus, discipline, respect, confidence, flexibility, etc. I recently did a webinar for UST Education on just this topic BUT my leadership lessons are ones I learned from my master, Master Seung Hum...