“It’s amazing what can be accomplished in an organization when people within the organization are not worried about individual milestones” – Robert Yates
What Yates states about organizations holds true for any human community. Countries do great things when those doing the great thing do it for their country instead of for themselves. This got me thinking about the role of influencers… and about their authenticity. In todays’ very social yet very transparent world, it seems to me that those influencers whose end game is the money, the popularity—whatever internal goal they have—won’t over time, be nearly as influential in the long run as those who advocate for those brands and products or causes that they truly care about.
For example, Mike and I truly love music and are passionate about helping independent artists who have talent gain more exposure. So we interview them on our shows, expose our audiences to their music, and make introductions we hope will be beneficial for them. As we continue to do it, more music professionals—artists, producers, etc.—learn about our efforts and contact us for help. So we have created and are building a reputation as influencers who are passionate about helping musicians succeed.
We do the same for start-up tech firms who have a great idea or product or service. And we do it because we truly believe in them. If they have the ability to partner with us as clients or sponsors, we are more deeply involved obviously. But even if they don’t yet have those resources, we’ll share their story and do what we can to give them a hand up. After all, there were and are those who do the same for us. And in the process we all become friends. That’s our motivation.
Seeing our friends succeed. That is our joy.
In a recent post by Mark Schaefer, we read that reciprocity born from paying it forward is “the engine that powers the economy of the social web” although it “is not something I planned or manufactured. I help people every single day without an expectation of reciprocity because I enjoy doing that. I’m not sure you can have a reciprocity “strategy.” You just have to be kind to people.”
That is why Mark has become someone who influences me. He speaks up for the things he believes in and constantly provides value in each post. He may be doing what he loves, but rather than just doing it for himself, He is using his passion to feed the needs others have.
Gratefully, another of my influencers, Mark Fidelman shared his post on G+. Had I not seen the update, I might have missed it altogether.
Mark Schaefer and Mark Fidelman are two of my influencers. Why? I’m not going out on much of a limb when I state that I’m confident our views of offering value first and selflessly is a common trait. Humans are drawn together by what we have in common, what we jointly believe, and by being gifted in the traits we consider to be valuable in others.
What is the foundation of your belief in the ability of influencers to change the world they live in?