By Tiffany Monhollon
Chuck had reached a point many bloggers reach. He was ready for something new. So, Chuck took a step and launched a new blog despite people who say starting a new blog is a mistake. He ignored the noise and pressed on, determined not just to duplicate but to shatter his former success.
One day, Chuck had a big idea. His idea, borne, I’m sure, partly out of his own experiences, aimed to help other bloggers who’d been where he’d been: Bloggers who were writing great content but had few readers. He knew there were thousands, millions, of people out there who needed a solution to this problem. I can tell you one thing: Chuck’s not the only one who’s ever identified this problem. He’s probably not the only one who ever had an idea of how to solve it.
But Chuck did what most people never do. He didn’t just see a problem and come up with a solution.
He moved past the fear and did something about it.
We Need Chuck to Lead Us
Chuck Westbrook’s story is a great one, undoubtedly. In fact, it’s unfolding right as we speak. It’s exciting to be a part of a movement like this. The motion it creates is undeniably exciting. The potential is extreme. He has the ability to touch so many lives, to help so many people. It’s incredible. It’s inspiration. It’s real.
What’s even more amazing is that this story isn’t about Chuck promoting Chuck, or his blog, or his ideas. Even though he’s happened to have done a brilliant job at that as he went along.
No, what Chuck has done is what all great leaders do. He has lived out, whether he knew it or not, one of my favorite passages of a new book I love, that says this: “Leaders who set out to give are more productive than leaders who seek to get.”
In case you haven’t read it yet, the book I’m quoting here is none other than marketing guru Seth Godin’s new book about leadership, Tribes. I could write a book-long review of Tribes and post it here for you to devour. I’ve already reviewed it for my company’s newsletter that will go out to about a quarter of a million business people. I hope they all buy a copy of this book and love it. I hope it challenges, too, in a deep and meaningful way. Because it’s a masterful work not just about breaking through normal or pushing past the status quo, but about the pure empowerment that each of us has in our current world to really create change.
A Challenge. Make that Two.
Which all leads me back to Chuck. Chuck is exactly the kind of leader that Godin describes in Tribes. He’s someone. Just like you. Like me. Just a guy who happens to have great ideas and great relationships. But who also has the ability to overcome the fear and take the lead.
In a matter of mere days, Chuck has created a tribe. How he did it is fascinating. Ideas and relationships. (And letting go of the fear.) That’s all it takes, and look, you get this huge tribe of people, all motivated around one idea. All committed to one type of change.
So, about these challenges. My first challenge is to go get a copy of Tribes for yourself, and to read it. Don’t sit around waiting for a good time, don’t wait for someone to give you a copy, just pick it up and read it. Don’t worry, it’s a quick enough read you might just have time to read it twice tomorrow. And you might just want to.
My second challenge is to head on over to Chuck’s blog and join his tribe. You will undoubtedly learn a lot from what he has going on there and from the blogs he’s going to showcase. But if you watch closely, you will learn something more.
If you watch Chuck, you will see authentic leadership in action. The real thing. Alive and well and working. Right now. Today.
Okay, so it turns out there’s a third challenge, too. Here’s what it is: Take all this to the next level. Read Tribes, check out Chuck, and then do something. Do what most people never do. Let go of the fear that’s holding you back from the leadership you have the potential for. And then answer this question:
Who will you lead?
Wanna talk Tribes, Chuck, or anything else this post inspires? Head on over to the comments section. I’ll be there. Still want more? Keep up with me on Twitter or subscribe to this blog to get free updates.
By Tiffany Monhollon | October 30, 2008