A strange thing I’ve noted in the past few years of social media proliferation is that blogs seem to be becoming fewer but more powerful. One indicator is that for the first time, I am being paid to blog (not this post). Original thoughts are getting harder to find, as everyone is Liking, Pinning & Retweeting. While this is good for me in some ways, it also shows the value of a unique voice.
Marcia Conner talks about turning words into swords, inspired by Douglas Rushkoff, who makes an interesting conclusion:
“My advice is to focus on groups over individuals, and verbs over nouns. It’s not the heroes who matter so much as the groups that have modeled their behavior; it’s not the things that matter so much as the actions we take.” —D. Rushkoff
Our training and education systems and establishments focus on individual skills. But what really changes organizations and makes them effective is group behaviour. So it’s not the lone blogger who is powerful but the network of bloggers who can build upon ideas and take action. One blogger is a mere scribe, but a blogging culture builds transparency and trust. Changing to a culture of work narration is not merely developing writing skills but embracing openness.
Writing is doing, especially if done frequently. Modelling narration can help change group behaviour. In the end it doesn’t matter how good one person is, it’s how good our societal networks are. The more effective these knowledge networks are at transmitting ideas and taking action from them, the less susceptible we will be to corporate shills, government agencies purporting to protect us, and many others who pretend to speak on our behalf. If ‘we’ can show that ‘we’ are connected, engaged, and will take action, then ‘we’ will be in a real democracy at home, or at work.