By and large, we think of strategy in either one or the other terms. We are either talking about how I can achieve something, or we are talking about how we can achieve something.
In fact, the two are inter-related. We do not form a “we” until I am satisfied that becoming part of “we” suite me. And I cannot achieve very much alone, so my individual strategies by and large involve dealing with groups.
And yet, we do not think very systematically about how this interchange works. Advisors and teachers either focus on how to realize your own potential or how to get along. Not how to do both at the same time.
In the old days, this was not all that important. We were by and large, coerced into being in groups. That would include being citizens, employees, and so on. Indeed, in the ancient Greek way of thinking, there was no greater punishment than banishment – being cast out of the group.
But these days, we see the rise of networking and platforms. We join and leave groups more frequently. Groups therefore, have less of a hold on our precious attention.
I think it is time to develop a model for how the two should interact. With a model like this, we can get beyond talking about “labor markets” and start talking about “idea markets” based on shared interests.