Updated: Jul 17
“If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” — African Proverb
Last week we looked at the key elements of creating a team ready to change your world: "People working together always accomplish more than individuals who labor alone."
But sometimes, despite our best efforts, a movement toward change doesn't happen. Maybe it's because of a lack of unity or clarity of vision. Perhaps it's because the group is focused on what it stands against rather than what it stands for.
Perhaps it's a lack of transformative leadership. Or maybe your group lacked the necessary structure or support that helps "people fighting for the cause work together, communicate, and be more effective." Or perhaps you hit a roadblock when you started to think that money or resources were the answer to the problem.
So how do transformational movements happen?
Top-Down: It Requires Leadership
"Transformation begins with influence, and influence always flows from the top down, like a waterfall, not upward."
If you want to initiate a change movement, the leadership at the top must be involved. Whether you want to change your business, government, community, church, etc., lasting change only happens if the leaders "give their voice, approval, influence, and involvement to the movement."
Bottom-Up: It Encourages Mobility
"While influence flows down, transformation climbs up."
Any meaningful change movement will work to add value to and improve the lives of those around you. And when people's lives improve, they are given the freedom to dream of something different and better; as a result, they rise to call. Their thinking will shift from "How do I get through this?" to "How can I help someone else?"
Inside-Out: It Embraces Values
"The origin [of every movement] is always in the heart of a person. It is an expression of the heart, birthed in the values that person has embraced, and from there, it flows outward and manifests itself in the individual's behaviors and communication."
Everyone has the potential to be transformed and participate in a transformational movement. First, they need to recognize their intrinsic value before considering how to add value to others. They must also understand that "the only thing between them and a better life is their willingness to live good values."
"The easiest thing is to react. The second easiest thing is to respond. But the hardest thing is to initiate." -- Seth Godin
Side by Side: It Desires Partnerships
"As the challenge escalates, the need for teamwork elevates."
Research has identified that there are ten key elements to any successful partnership:
A common mission
Value of the partner's contribution
Few to Many: It Enables Growth
"Mass movements don't begin with the masses. They begin with a few people. When people can sit around the table together as equal contributors, everyone wins."
Creating a safe space for people to come together, learn, and share allows them the opportunity to grow and impact others like them.
Here to There: It Leads to Transformation
"The ultimate goal of any movement is to create a better future. It starts with good values. Good values create growth. Growth creates transformation. Transformation creates movement. Movement creates change. And change help us cross over into a better future."
Transformation movements don't have to be big, but they do have to be meaningful. Remember, a single drop changes the surface of the water.
This week, consider the following questions:
Which of these elements do you identify with most?
How can you participate in a movement for change using that element?