All inclusive

There are approximately 7,601 Million (7.6Bn) people in the world. When someone calls you ‘One in a million’ that hypothetically means a potential for 7,601 chances for that to happen. Like me, are you surprised by the amount of people in the world? Better yet, are YOU ‘one in a million’?

I believe that at one point in everyone’s life, a truly wonderful event occurs that can make living a lifetime wothwhile. Some people are lucky to experience that feeling more than once.

I think it is safe to say that regardless of how many versions there are, that everyone is individually unique.

However, enough about uniqueness as I wish to discuss, inclusion. Placing people into groupings, whether they are unique or not, I class this as, ‘Belonging to a tribe’.

I originate from Northern Ireland and as I was growing up, there was from what I can remember, one major area of interest to most of the people I met was, ‘Which religion you were; were you Protestant or Catholic?’

Believe it or not, but I can say it is true for me at least, that growing up in Belfast City during those times that it was not clear to everyone which religion they were. It was true that in the city most children had already been segregated into area, school, church, etc. This was unlike the smaller towns, which mostly had a mixture of everything. This being due to a lack of facilities. Belfast was mostly one religion or t’other.

For me, I didn’t realise or have to think about what religion I was until I was 8 years old, as no one had asked up to that point.  It was very clear to everyone, except me. I came from the East, I went to Elmgrove and I attended the Elim Church. Everyone who wanted to know, knew what I was, like I said, except me, as a child I never paid it any attention to it, my view was that this was something chosen for me, not chosen by me

Why is it important to discuss this?

For me – I am apolitical; non-religious, and open-minded about race, creed and against all other bias. Let’s get on with living, life is short enough, don’t you think?

I choose to live a good life and care about others. For me this is enough.

As for ‘The NI Troubles’, they were not my fight. I wasn’t even born when the troubles started and so like most people of Northern Ireland, I just tried to get through those times safely. I actually had two major incidents growing up that brought the troubles closer to me, but these are stories for another occasion.

Why is any of this interesting?

My own first choice of tribe was my school friends, the second was when I started working. I did and still look at an employee as being part of a tribe. Isn’t it kind of?

The people who work at Google, couldn’t they be known as ‘Googlers’. Or the members of Starbucks are the ‘Bucksters’ or the like. Of course I joke about there names, they do not exist and if I have offended anyone, I have not meant to and sincerely apologise but perhaps there are workplaces that feel more like attending daily family get-together. Whatever they are called does this not create a sense of inclusion, a tribe to be proud of?

Working together, creating together, belonging together.

You tell me, do you still have a loyalty for every place of work you have ever worked for, with or in? I say Yes, I do. The rest of you need to determine your own but I would be glad to hear those thoughts. We all would, and the names, only if you’re allowed. 😀

I think it can be a great concept, an  inclusive working environment where everyone has a sense of belonging and works towards a consolidated vision. Maybe the need for the names are not so great but still gives an air of fun and pride to be part of something.

I mean look at the ‘Trekkies’ or ‘Jedi’ Starwars fanatics. Are these not identifiable tribes that people will eternally belong to?

Which tribe are you a part of? Are you part of more than one?

I think yes, of course that is possible too.

In the age of social media, a sense of belonging has become way more regarded.

In the global age, we can connect to groupings everywhere, people from all walks of life, all interests and hobbies and specialisations.

I think it is important to discuss the tribes that one belongs to, and more importantly why one chooses a particular tribe over another.

I have built up 15,000 social media contacts and by normal standards that is a average figure, others have up to 30 million connections and counting.

What’s the – so what?

I have a network of people that have been carefully selected because they offer me something: interest or friendship, or just because we actually know each other in real life.

Ask yourself: How are your own tribes made up, who do they consist of?

Is it people who can verify you, your skills, your work, your character?

Would they recommend you without a second thought?

Can they really be used to help you find work, a number of people, accuse LinkedIn of not being relevant for finding a job or have failed to secure employment through its use? Is this your experience?

Whatever reason you are a part of a tribe, I hope that you behave accordingly, you treat those people in it how YOU wish to be treated. I believe it is right to expect mutual behaviour towards each other, that includes those in your working tribe, isn’t that known as a ‘Good Working Culture?’, and a good amount of organisations get that part right.

I grew up believing my family originated from the Cree Indians tribe of North Canada, only to find out there are more that one tribe called Cree. Mine, they orignate from Bangor, Northern Ireland. This makes way more sense. My teachers always claimed I belonged in the ‘Day-Dreamers’ tribe, who knew they were right. On a serious note, whatever tribe you do choose or do get chosen to be a part of, please please please treat it with care, consideration and the upmost respect.

People take their entire lifetime to be able to trust and to maintain it, try not be the one who abuses the trust.

BE AWARE: sometimes whether you are inside or outside of a group/ tribe or clan is outside of your control. One can be evicted for the insignificant reasons, look at the example of the legend, Connor McCloud of the Clan McCloud (The Highlander) didn’t he start in a clan (a Scottish tribe)? Even he got evicted just for being that wee bit magical.

by: Alan Houston Cree

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