February 1, 2011
I received two unrelated but tantalizingly connected links today in my email inbox:
- One claimed that there is an economic emergency caused by a lack of initiative (Poke-the-Box by Seth Godin)
- The other was to Google’s new application (ngrams) for trending the frequency of words appearing in books from 1800 to now.
How could I resist trending initiative (along with self esteem) over the long view?
From 1800 to 2008 there has been an explosive growth in the occurrence of the term initiative and then a decay starting about the 1970’s. Interestingly, there is concomitant growth of the term self-esteem during the same period that initiative begins its decline. Hmmmm….