So maybe that didn’t go as you expected?
We have choices.
We can blame, complain, and allow our fear of the changes we didn’t want to take us hostage.
Or we can recognise that democracy is messy, particularly when it is given full rein, but at the same time notice the stuff beyond the fear.
For whatever reason, people have felt remote and isolated from power, and they were able to share and mobilise that fear in ways they have never been able to do before.
We can see other areas where people who care feel detached from the forces that govern them, particularly in sectors where profit is not the priority. In the NHS, Education, Local Councils, and many Charities where people are constantly asked to do more with less.
More with less is fine to a point, but it is finite. At some point, we have to find a different way. If being connected the way we are means anything, it means that we can find those ways – with or without the permission of those who assume they have the power.
Perhaps BREXIT is not a one off, perhaps it just a very big signal of something larger. If we don’t have connection, shared purpose and trust, just why are we doing it the way we do?
David Rock published very interesting research on the neuroscience of engagement which suggested there are five key levers that drive our engagement – or disengagement – which he labeled the SCARF model. It has five components – our sense of Status, Certainty, Autonomy, Relatedness and Fairness compared to those around us.
When we look at How the BREXIT team operated, they leveraged every one of those five – emphasising those who felt inferior, scared, controlled, ignored and exploited.
If we have any sense, we’ll stop obsessing on what’s happened, focus on what caused it, and recognise we face similar challenges all around us.
If we do, we can not only change it, but develop new forms of leadership that harness the positive side to enable people to share individual and joint purpose, and create organisations that will help them achieve it.
We have a job to do.