The biggest single force holding back people's involvement in social media is fear of disapproval. Fear of what customers' reactions might be. Fear of what the boss might think. Fear of what friends might say. Even fear of the tacit disapproval of being ignored
Where did we learn to be so afraid? Why do allow our lives to be so limited by what others think? All of the famous figures who changed the world got over this fear. They invariably faced disapproval, disagreement and disdain. Many of them faced imprisonment and many lost their lives. They didn't let that stop them.
But we let ourselves go numb at the prospect of someone laughing at our first blog post. We don't state the obvious. We keep so much of ourselves to ourselves and don't rock the boat.
What a shame ...
I read this today and was ashamed at myself, because this is some of the thought processes that I go through when I see a great article.
Sometimes I hoard because of fear and my colleagues don't get the benefit of my research.
When I post a great article on the blog I make sure that it is credited to the originator - in this case Euan Semple, but a nagging thought at the back of my mind says don't attribute it people will find this source and then you will have lost some of your expertise. Why should people benefit from your research and if you do will they remember where they found the article and then use it to diminish your role.
Then I say to myself if we all in an organisation behaved like that, then it is like the beggar my neighbour policies that led to the great Depression of the 1930's and then the benefits of flows of knowledge would be lost which might benefit the organisation and help it not only survive but grow and thus create new jobs and even save others.
In another post, I'm attaching a great article by the people at Anecdote on story telling - it highlights the story of Brunelleschi and how he hoarded and only let out in bits his thoughts on the design for the dome of the iconic church and Duomo in Florence and his thought processes.
Perhaps Brunelleschi's fears are the same with innovation in a lot of organisations.
I was talking today about something that I thought would help people engage with a knowledge capture system through better tagging, but once again it is how hard you push when those nagging fears that Euan outlines play on your mind as well as your own demons, but also to recognise that people on the receiving end of ideas may perceive it as a threat to their visions and trigger their fears.
A great quote today from Marshall McLuhan (hat tip to JP Rangaswami)
The major advances in civilisation are processes that all but wreck the societies in which they occur”