UNFOLLOW

Book / Interviews / Workshops

by Dale Renner and Benjamin Erben

The creative power of dissent

Unfollow is a book that provides inspiration and guidance on how to disagree with and disobey those in power when necessary. And to resist the norms of the crowd in our current times of doubt and discontent. Unfollow argues that resistance, opposition and non-conformity are key skills to enable social progress, innovation and personal freedom. At its heart, Unfollowing is a creative act, as it opens the space for new thinking and experiments. 

The book features very personal interviews with 40+ people, some of them leaders in their fields, telling their personal unfollowing story and sharing their learnings.

‘Unfollow’ is a relatively new term which has been popularised by its use in social media. The term might be new, but the concept is as old as humanity: instead of following in others’ footsteps, some of us break away from the pack and forge our own path. It’s what creators, mavericks, innovators and provocateurs have been doing since the early humans left the safety of East Africa and spread across the world. In social media, the term ‘unfollow’ indicates a purposeful action, an intention to cut off a relationship or connection which we no longer regard as useful or healthy. While we borrow the term from social media, this book is about real world – Unfollowing with a capital ‘U’. To Unfollow is to take a different path, to resist the status quo or the requirements of others, to dissent. It is a behaviour, not just an idea or way of thinking.

Unfollowing is for anyone who wants to create new opportunities in business, in the public realm, or in their own lives.

Unfollow argues that resistance, opposition and non-conformity are key skills to enable social progress, innovation and personal freedom. At its heart, Unfollowing is a creative act, as it opens the space for new thinking and experiments. Unfollow is a book that provides inspiration and guidance on how to disagree with and disobey those in power when necessary, and to resist the norms of the crowd in our current times of doubt and discontent.

We see this discontent in Donald Trump’s election and Brexit, and the stagnation of low wage communities. We see dissatisfaction at work, in politics and in people’s individual lives. We see younger generations challenging traditional work hierarchies. We see globalisation and technology disrupting industry after industry, with the old ways of doing things not providing answers to the future. The recent complication is that modern digital life, while providing more options, is also proving to be a hidden trap that can channel us toward conformity. The algorithms that run the internet are popularity-based, with the effect that we are constantly being prompted to follow the average preferences of the crowd. In addition, a new breed of data analytics firm is using social media and other data sources to understand individuals and even manipulate their purchasing and voting behaviour, changing the outcome of elections and markets.

The rise of authoritarian and populist leaders around the world also raises the question on a broader social level — how can we resist leaders that seek to control us? How do we disagree, dissent and stand up for what we believe in? And how do we protect ourselves against the inevitable push-back from those in power?

Topics covered: innovation, decision-making, originality, creativity, entrepreneurship, creative destruction, differentiation, evolutionary variations, breakthrough-thinking, courage, resistance, nonconformity, rebellion, problem-solving, freedom, individualism, social progress, social innovation, individuality, autonomy, personal growth, normative behaviour, social pressure, manipulation, authoritarianism, free press, whistleblowing, transparency.

Target audience: Business people, entrepreneurs and non-profits with an interest in innovation and creativity, the creative class, social and government readers and individuals struggling with feeling ‘stuck’ in life or work. The book is relevant to business, self-care, and ‘smart thinking’ publication categories. The book relates to innovation and individuality, but it does it with a harder edge than typical innovation books, as it focuses on the process of resisting the status quo, not just the process of generating a new idea.

During our 35 interviews so far, all interviewees, who are successful leaders in their fields, immediately identified with the concept and started to use the term naturally in their own conversation. This is early evidence of the power of the idea. The ambition is to reposition a well-known word ‘unfollow’ – and to shift its meaning in common usage.

ShareTw.Fb.Pin.
...

This is a unique website which will require a more modern browser to work!

Please upgrade today!