When the path of one person's action becomes the path of many, the energy and momentum that results has the potential to create significant change.
Movements are born. Existing industries are disrupted. We see the evolution of the new in business, in society, and in the way the two cross over, as individuals use the power of the personal to drive change, and create opportunities to bring the future to the present.
Enter stage left the 'flashmob'; used by the marketing mafioso to create impact-high, memorable experiences and emotional responses within an immediate vicinity or environment. It's a technique far more engaging and further reaching than the traditional beige printed ads bombarding our letterboxes and media, and it's impossible not to become a part of the flashmob mentality.
One becomes many as unsuspecting audiences are wowed by dance troupes, stopped by choirs of voices, and inspired by the 'random' appearance of people playing musical instruments and becoming a pop up orchestra. The fast moving world stops for a moment as tired crowds at airport welcome gates are emotionally awakened by serenades or as one person lets loose at a music festival - to be quickly joined, of course, by an increasing throng of individuals who are, in that one moment, an exemplar of togetherness.
These are experiences with a long lasting impression, in fact, quite often unforgettable.
The impact of the collective is exactly what we are now witnessing (thankfully) across the world, as the demand for action in response to the Syrian refugee crisis increases in noise. It has, it appears, finally reached the crest of the wave of popular opinion which leaders ignore at their peril.
Each of us has the ability to create our own flashmob. We can form our own group of cheerleaders aligned to a collective purpose, mission and goals. These groups of people connect, and, from choice, actively contribute to create a shift for all involved.
Whilst we continue to spend an inordinate amount of money on personal development to increase our depth of knowledge and skill, to become 'better people' or become known for something, the reality is this; without a flashmob around you, the ability to create the ripples of change, to drive emotional response, and to build engagement and influence are minimal.
Empowering yourself with skills is great - a big tick to you for that. But to really drive your net worth, and net influence, you have to become a more connected you, building the breadth and width of your personal reach. This consequently creates opportunities to collaborate further, and shift your current state to become your future.
In the CEB High Potential Management Survey (2005), results indicated that only 29 percent of high performers are also high potential employees.
While having what it takes to achieve more, the remaining 71 percent of high performers are missing that special something needed to excel at the next level of an organization.
So there you have it - having the skills in one thing.
Having the skills to surround yourself with those who empower your own ability is another.
Author Sean Stephenson says:
Communication is merely an exchange of information, but connection is an exchange of humanity.
Embrace the flashmob mentality - and start an intellectual and collaborative riot of ideas and information.
Jumping into a crowd never looked so good.
CORRECTION: A previous version of this post incorrectly referred to CEB as the Corporate Leadership Council. The name of the company has since been corrected.