The Power of I:
Balancing Individualism and Collectivism in the Workplace

Arin N. Reeves
April 2011

What if i argued that You, the reader, should be shown greater reverence in the way i capitalize my pronouns? Would You feel like We were more having more of a dialogue if i broke a few capitalization rules to be more inclusive?

English is the only language where the pronoun referring to the self is capitalized. The architecture of many languages like Hindi, Arabic and Hebrew don’t even have capital letters, but of the languages that have capital letters and capitalization rules, none other than English requires the capitalization of the individual self that is speaking. In other words, in English, I am to stand out in a sentence whether you, he, she and/or they are part of the conversation.

Think Smarter. Lead Better.

  • I not only use all the brains that I have, but all I can borrow.

    Woodrow Wilson
  • The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function.

    F. Scott Fitzgerald
  • Honest difference of views and honest debate are not disunity. They are the vital process of policy among free men.

    Herbert Hoover
  • Strength lies in differences, not in similarities.

    Stephen R. Covey
  • The measure of intelligence is the ability to change.

    Albert Einstein
  • Our ability to reach unity in diversity will be the beauty and the test of our civilisation.

    Mahatma Gandhi
  • Where all think alike, no one thinks very much.

    Walter Lippmann
  • Diversity: the art of thinking independently together.

    Malcolm Forbes
  • One must even beware of too much certainty that the answer to life's problems can only be found in one way and that all must agree to search for light in the same way and cannot find it in any other way.

    Eleanor Roosevelt
  • In our work and in our living, we must recognize that difference is a reason for celebration and growth, rather than a reason for destruction.

    Audre Lorde
  • Strength lies in differences, not in similarities.

    Stephen R. Covey
  • Wit lies in recognizing the resemblance among things which differ and the difference between things which are alike.

    Madame De Stael
  • Differences challenge assumptions.

    Anne Wilson Schaef
  • Wide differences of opinion in matters of religious, political, and social belief must exist if conscience and intellect alike are not to be stunted, if there is to be room for healthy growth.

    Theodore Roosevelt
  • There never were in the world two opinions alike, no more than two hairs or two grains; the most universal quality is diversity.

    Michel de Montaigne
  • Diversity and independence are important because the best collective decisions are the product of disagreement and contest, not consensus or compromise.

    James Surowiecki
  • Freethinkers are those who are willing to use their minds without prejudice and without fearing to understand things that clash with their own customs, privileges, or beliefs.

    Leo Tolstoy
  • Diversity creates dimension in the world.

    Elizabeth Ann Lawless
  • It is not that I'm so smart. But I stay with the questions much longer.

    Albert Einstein
  • To effectively communicate, we must realize that we are all different in the way we perceive the world and use this understanding as a guide to our communication with others.

    Tony Robbins
  • Your assumptions are your windows on the world. Scrub them off every once in a while, or the light won't come in.

    Isaac Asimov
  • America has believed that in differentiation, not in uniformity, lies the path of progress. It acted on this belief; it has advanced human happiness, and it has prospered.

    Louis D. Brandeis
  • The biggest mistake is believing there is one right way to listen, to talk, to have a conversation -- or a relationship.

    Deborah Tannen
  • Human salvation lies in the hands of the creatively maladjusted.

    Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • Honest difference of views and honest debate are not disunity.They are the vital process of policy among free men.

    Herbert Hoover
  • Controversial' as we all know, is often a euphemism for 'interesting and intelligent.

    Kevin Smith
  • Difference of opinion is helpful in religion.

    Thomas Jefferson
  • When we lose the right to be different, we lose the privilege to be free.

    Charles Evan Hughes
  • Peace is not unity in similarity but unity in diversity, in the comparison and conciliation of differences.

    Mikhail Gorbachev