Oh no, she’s not banging an about wimmin is she, again…
This week there is a heck of a lot of earnestness around because it is International Woman’s Day on Friday.
Earnestness is a tiresome quality. The earnest assume that their cause is most important, that it may need little contextualizing and that their moral standpoint demands audience.
Earnest people can’t be funny, because to be funny you have to observe what is going on with detachment, and make mental leaps laterally.
And what earnest women – and men – forget, is that humour, along with its close friend sadness, is possibly the strongest form of collective glue.
Why else is live comedy so popular?
‘Steady on sister, you’re not dissing the cause are you?’ … I hear you think.
Hell no – but whatever cause you champion, laws of attraction apply.
And they could be:
Going On The Pull
Attractive causes have a coolness and an irrefutable logic to them that pulls us to them, rather than pinions us against a wall. Our cause needs to be a pool people want to dive into and be active in, rather than a tsunami which knocks them over, and renders them senseless.
Pull behaviours include listening, reacting to feedback, identifying common ground and creating scenarios for the future.
Avoiding The Sanctimonious
Many causes championed by saintly politicians and career quangoites
are as much about PR for the individuals involved, as they are the cause.
Looking at an equalities body’s newsletter the other day, I saw that every back issue cover had a large photo of the chief exec on the cover. The newsletter may as well have been titled ‘Our Boss’s Ego’, rather than pretending to be much to do with the cause.
The only people attracted to politicians and quangoites whose behaviour ranges from saint to martyr, are competitor lions, observing closely while dribbling saliva and licking their lips…
Don’t say you weren’t warned.
Being Creative and Irreverent
Our digital age offers amazing opportunity to create for a cause, rather than spending money on it. This means valuing people with ideas. Like this lot.
And especially online, creativity involves having a laugh and irreverence, and asking ‘How can we make our cause saucy?’ (and I mean saucy as in sticky with impact, not Barbara Windsor).
For in a networked rather than hierarchical world, it is impact that matters, less official power and it is creative expression that makes impact.
Need to know more about this? Then check out Made To Stick by the Heath brothers.
And here’s to creative wimmin making impact.