As of today, I am a proud member of a new bloggers' circle. Set up by Matthew Cain with the support of the RSA, the idea is that a group of amateur bloggers commit to reading, reviewing and publicising each others' blogs. We all aim to create at least one post a week, and comment on at least two posts from other blogs every month. At the moment, it feels like a warm supportive space. Maybe that's because the process hasn't yet begun.
There are lots of Circles out there, but I have immediate visions of knitting circles. From there, the phrase 'stick to your knitting' comes to mind. The phrase was apparently created by Tom Peters (that business guru whose book 'In Search of Excellence' identified a number of excellent companies whose fortunes nosedived post-publication). It means carry on doing what you are familiar with and what you do best. If your company is good at knitting, don't diversify into something new.
The act of blogging is in a sense a direct denial of this daft principle. Great blogs play with the unfamiliar, create connections between different areas of knowledge, none of which the authors might know much about. They acknowledge the value of genuine expertise, but challenge and probe information, teasing out new insights and taking risks with half-formed opinions.
Let's hope everyone in the bloggers circle and beyond sticks to our blogging and keeps ranting way beyond our authority.