In the course of human events things sometimes get so bad that something must change and everyone knows it. This is what we are seeing play out across the Arab world today. The problem is that a common effort of getting rid of a Mubarak or Gadhafi does not result from the work of a single leader. As we see in Revolution 2.0, social media are strong in spreading a consensus quickly, but they are poor at identifying leadership.
The Washington Post published, “Sustaining a Leaderless Revolt in Egypt” in its March 24, 2011 edition. Author William Wan pointed out that now that the primary objective of Mubarak’s ouster has been achieved, there are hundreds or thousands of interest groups with all sorts of different agendas that are squabbling over what comes next. This is inevitable, and also explains the queasy feeling of many commentators over the U.N. Security Council’s decision on Libya. Who are the leaders of the “opposition,” and what is their agenda?
Historical parallels give pause. The French public finally understood that something needed to be done about their monarchy in 1789, when they stormed the Bastille, but the aftermath took ten years to play out. Between September 5, 1793 and July 27, 1794 the so-called Reign of Terror killed up to 40,000. It was brought on by both real and imagined conspiracies among rival political groups, both foreign and domestic.
Some weeks ago CNN, MSNBC, and other major media outlets anointed Egyptian Wael Ghonim, the Google marketing executive, as the leader of Revolution 2.0, though he spent much of the actual protest time imprisoned by the Mubarak regime. Of course, one tearful interview after such an ordeal does not a leader make, but perhaps we are seeing something very interesting about Ghonim’s personality profile since former President Mubarak’s departure.
Wan’s article points out that after Mubarak’s fall competing interests objected to Ghonim’s media spotlight, and asked him to stand down from so much public attention. A quick search for recent stories about him suggests that he has done this. Some may believe this means that he has withdrawn from the leadership of Revolution 2.0, but a sampling from his Twitter timeline, @Ghonim, suggests that he is just keeping on keeping on.
His continuing interest in the power of his >125,000 following on Twitter and his Facebook notoriety is made clear in this Tweet from March 22, 2011: @Ghonim “Plz help us determine the future role that #KhaledSaid FB Fanpage can play given that it has 1m Egyptians http://bit.ly/gVqSc8”
Ghonim’s recent mentions of #Syria #Yemen and #KhaledSaid clearly tell us that he is seeing something much broader than just the downfall of Hosni Mubarak and a revolutionized Egypt. And, he is smart enough to see the implications of the squabbling post-Mubarak for his own long-term success.
It seems to me that he is launching a leadership revolution over the past few weeks. His original notoriety and continued social media activity reveals that his personality profile may be “ENTP” on the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator test. This is an instrument that identifies personality tendencies based on Jungian Psychology, and the writings on personality type of Carl G. Jung. The implications for leadership styles and skills can be easily found by looking for “Portrait of an ENTP” in any search engine.
In a separate article I will address the broad implications of the Myers-Briggs personality profile in determining who will emerge as the ultimate leaders of Revolution 2.0. One thing is clear, the fall of a despot is only the beginning of Revolution 2.0, as any Frenchman will be happy to tell you.
Skip Conover is an International Executive, Author, and Artist. He has written a novel, a published current affairs book, and a published journal. He turned his long time interest in Jungian Archetype into the Archetype in Action Organization.