Belief, Hereticism, and Innovative Leadership


“Tribes are about faith – about belief in an idea and in a community.” -Seth Godin

Mike Henry of the Lead Change Group chose to enter the social media world by focusing on leadership. He says that he  started reading what others wrote about leadership and he tweeted and re-tweeted their posts. Guy Kawasaki, according to Henry, suggested that your own content be 10% or less of what you plugged online. 

As Henry went into the Twitterverse, he found many leadership gurus working as individuals. Consequently, he perceived there to be an opportunity to create a model that could actually move the global leadership needle through collaboration. He felt that real change would take “a movement; an army of leaders willing to address the need for a new leadership model.” Henry founded the Lead Change Group as a means of addressing the need to amass an army:

On Twitter, I could find a small army of people committed to making a difference about leadership. Sure, there are people who are more interested in promoting themselves, and there have been many who tried Twitter but couldn’t remain engaged.  But there were (and continues to be) a growing number of people sincere about addressing a global leadership problem; and one that Godin was writing about.

“So here we are. We live in a world where we have the leverage to make things happen, the desire to do work we believe in and a marketplace that is begging us to be remarkable. And yet, in the middle of these changes, we still get stuck.” -Seth Godin, Tribes

He goes on to say that the status quo and our systems and habits make us stuck. We’re stuck in a “factory” which he describes as any system that forces us to reinforce the status quo. The antidote is people who believe in what they’re doing. He calls them heretics.Pioneer

“Heretics are the new leaders. The ones who challenge the status quo, who get out in front of their tribes, who create movements.” -Seth Godin, Tribes

I don’t want to simply be a heretic. I want to encourage leadership heretics.

Lead Change would be something different; not your mama’s leadership group. We went so far as to claim the intention “instigating a leadership revolution.” We didn’t start the revolution, but many of us recognized we were all in it. So we decided to band together.

Lead Change Group is based on the ideas:

  1. Anyone can lead. Leadership is an attitude, a decision.
  2. You don’t need permission. You simply need to start.
  3. Your greatest influence comes from who you are, not what title you have.
  4. The world needs you to bring your best self and make a positive difference.
  5. Others believe in your leadership if you start with yourself.
  6. If you’re going to do something, do it with everything you have.

What Godin advocates and Henry describes resonates very deeply with me. Being heretical just for the sake of drawing attention is a misguided notion. However, taking initiative to inspire others, having the courage to pursue a dream, and embracing the perseverance requisite to see results is a kind of heresy that captures my heart!

When I describe my business model for Hippotential, I describe it as helping business owners get unstuck. This is congruent with Godin’s challenges to be remarkable and make things happen while we do that which beckons us. Every entrepreneur should feel so moved–or stop being an entrepreneur! Every intrapreneur should feel the same way:)


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