A tribe is any group of people, large or small, who are connected to one another, a leader, and an idea. For millions of years, humans have joined tribes, be they religious, ethnic, political, or even musical (think of the Deadheads). It’s our nature. Now the Internet has eliminated the barriers of geography, cost, and time. All those blogs and social networking sites are helping existing tribes get bigger and enabling new tribes to be born—groups of ten or ten million who care about a political campaign, or a new way to fight global warming.
Who is going to lead all these tribes? The Web can do amazing things, but it can’t provide leadership. That still has to come from individuals—people just like you who have passion about something. Anyone who wants to make a difference now has the tools at their fingertips.
If you think leadership is for other people, think again—leaders come in surprising packages. Ignore an opportunity to lead and you risk turning into a “sheepwalker”—someone who fights to protect the status quo at all costs, never asking if obedience is doing you (or your organization) any good. Sheepwalkers don’t do very well these days.
Tribes will make you think (really think) about the opportunities for leading your fellow employees, customers, investors, believers, hobbyists, readers. . . . It's not easy, but it's easier than you probably imagine.