I Choose Not To Know 7 Billion People
The impetus of this post is as an extended answer to a question posed by Tausif Mundrawala about dining with complete strangers. This buzz goes further than the comment I left on Tausif's buzz namely :
In short it is a frame of reference which does not dismiss collaboration but does not also mean that collaboration is with every possible human being in this world. There are limits to collaboration and those limits begin with how impossible it is for me as a human being to know 7 billion people.
At the level of business it is increasingly simpler to know billions of people because big data, data mining and data analytics is becoming so powerful that it can dine on information in ways that our biological brain can never do, no matter how sophisticated and complex our brains are in terms of all the things it is capable of doing.
So I choose NOT TO KNOW 7 Billion People for the simple reason that I cannot accomplish that "God-Like" feat. More so the discernment piece I left at the end of my comment to Tausif means that I am free to create relationships that are relevant to my own existence and in "knowing people" less is considerably more.
Just because we have read a biography of a person does not mean that we "know them" and that is for the simple reason that they do not know us just because we had individual access to an offline book or an online biography outline. We don't know famous celebrities and we don't know personal brands - celebrities, influencers and personal brands simply make the inference that we should know them. Just because the inference is marketed does not mean that we know them.
Now if my family got me to attend a lunch where the people that are known to them are of no relevance to me or worse a complete personality clash that is far removed from the person I am, then, it is possible that I will be drawn in to social niceties but that is hardly me being me. It is hard enough escaping poor social habits like being people pleasers without creating a faux relationship, one that I have no intention of buliding, supporting or developing.
At the business level I am more than happy not engaging business with every Tom, Dick or Harriet with a business card. There has to be a real fit, coupled with a deeper level appreciation of the other. Just because we have mastered how to collaborate does not necessarily mean that we should collaborate - for the most part it is frightening how easily we are conditioned in a virtual social network space. There is certain collaborations that are simply not worth existing in a dumb downed environment.
Being selective is being prudent. We engage more prudence with financial instruments than we do with authentic human relationships. If we cannot know the name of every human being on this planet, we at least need know that the freebie door of instant gratification social networks is not who we are, or at least not who I am.
I appreciate that the tribe that I work or have worked with is one that is known to me but if this knowing is an extended superficial layer then what are the roots which I am fashioning my very existence? Just as Founder Values provide us an opportunity to step in the shoes of pure genius, the very stepping into those shoes is not particularly healthy for the medical and prescriptive Pharma legacy.
I choose not to know 7 Billion People and this year I was exposed to only a handful of faces, and typically the bane of my professional demeanor is forgetting faces and names. I should keep a flip pad of possible connections that lists people that probably have not lost touch with me, but keeping such a flip pad only serves to turn me into a slave of an auto institution. Just because the social invitation makes it relatively easy to connect with people, discernment allows to ensure we connect to people who can considerably add value and maybe to our own gene pool.
I choose to know a handful of people because I can and what I cannot do, well there is the rub, I cannot do.