How to start a social movement: leadership lessons from dancing guy

In my past post I wrote about how dance can be used as metaphor for getting into your work flow, your zone.  Dance can be used for other things too.  Such as how to start a social movement.

Malcolm Gladwell talks about the things that need to happen to ‘tip’ it into mainstream society in the Tipping Point; critical folk who push something over into the mainstream.

Want to see a social movement in action?  Take a look at the hairy, dancing guy, a short video narrated by Derek Sivers.

He makes the point that it’s the first follower that transforms the ‘lone nut’ into a leader.

New followers emulate the followers not the leader.

As more people join the movement it becomes less risky to do so.

Leaders need to nurture the followers because it’s about the movement not about you.

What’s a person to do?  Clearly there are three choices:

  1. Watch Derek’s video below
  2. As Derek says, if you find a lone nut doing something great have the courage to join in OR
  3. Have the courage to be a lone nut (at least until you find some followers)


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