Updated: Apr 30
In this post I would like to share my views and opinions about the value of the concept of tribes in relation to my work on my networked learning space (NLS) and the issues/challenges with the concept.
In the article Finding Your Tribe May Be the Hardest Thing You Do by Jeff Goins, he writes about how you don't need a large following to have your own tribe. All you need is a group of a few different people who want to contribute their ideas on a particular subject, and they make an effort to be a part of the tribe. What I got from Goins' article is that if you can get just a few dedicated people to join you in your endeavor, you're in good shape. I was under the impression that the more followers you have, the larger your impact. That thinking, I am learning, isn't necessarily correct. You can make a large impact even if your tribe is small, as long as it is intentional: "Before you begin growing your brand and building your tribe, take a moment and decide: When will you be happy? What’s success look like? Is it a book deal? Someone hiring you? A million visitors to your website?"
I also really enjoyed the article Three Important Steps to Building a Killer Tribe, also by Jeff Goins. He has valuable lessons about how to engage your audience and lays out ways you can get people to care about what you have to say. Goins says: "If people aren’t anticipating your message, they’ll just tune you out. You have to earn permission, speak directly to a specific audience, and deliver what you promise." I agree with this statement and have noticed that I tend to get frustrated if I'm following a seemingly professional account but then they post something completely off topic and usually something political or goofy. This kind of post belongs on a personal platform, not a professional one. There is a balance you have to find between being accessible and being disorganized.
The only possible issue I see with the concept of a tribe is that people might misinterpret this to mean they only interact with those who share the same opinions. It is crucial to find people with unique and diverse opinions so that you don't get stuck in an echo chamber. Echo chambers can be seen very typically in political tribes.