In previous blogs, I have tried to reiterate the absolute need for diversity in the workplace, especially when innovation and creativity are basic requirements. However, I do not want to override or forget one very basic other need and that is to ‘find your tribe’. On an individual level, we can be happy with the content of our work but still, somehow feel uncomfortable with the people around us. Company culture, departmental behaviour, cliques and groups can either make us feel welcome or constantly on the outside.
When listening to the stories of many ‘great lives’, one thing always seems to come back and that is their greatest career achievements occurred at times when they felt most comfortable with the people they were working with, when they felt ‘in their tribe’. Being ‘in our tribe’ allows us to be criticised without getting hurt, to give and receive, to understand and most of all, to feel confident to be ourselves and to dare to do new and unexpected things.
Be it on the stage, on the road, in the factory or in the office, being with people you like (or dare I say love?) can bring so much personal satisfaction that purpose and take home pay can become secondary concerns. The great thing about tribes is that they tend to be self-regulating and promote a sense of community beyond one’s logical expectations.
I know some readers will say that they have the sense of tribe at home with their families, and of course that can be true but families are a given thing; some loving and functional, others not. We inherit our families and yet we choose our tribes and friends, and very few of us achieve our career successes within our families.
So, when considering a new career or simply a change, it may be important to consider what kind of people you feel most comfortable being among? When and with whom do things feel right and why? I find that looking back to our past can sometimes give us powerful clues for our future.
For now, I am off to join a section of my tribe,
Have a good week,
“when work is much more than a means to an income and when you feel you are making a difference, surrounded by like minded people, then you know you are in the right place. You are in your tribe.” Harley Lovegrove