Word of the day: Swarm – and why you should know what it means


    Word of the day: Swarm. Its meaning, according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary is defined as a very large number of insects moving together. Biologists use the term swarm to describe animal behavior, when a large number of a species gather in a group and move in the same direction organically. Part up is a startup which aims to create swarms with us, human beings.

    It is not a secret that the reality of employment and organizations has been changing. For my father’s generation, only a few career options were available, so you could be considered what society defined as successful at that time.

    There are currently innumerous paths that we could follow. People reflect to find out what it is that they actually want before listening to external influences. We are not stuck to the idea that we have to stay in one company our whole life, or practice just one profession.

    We have the urge to do more, to maximize our potential and chase our dreams. Companies need to adapt to their new employees and customers, understand their new needs and demands. At the same time, they need to adjust to the speed things are happening. Big organizations, just as a train with too much weight on it, tends to move too slow. Hierarchy makes processes snail-paced and sometimes, to be honest, stupid. It takes years for decisions that a CEO makes to get implemented in a company with thousands of employees and hundreds of offices around the world. In the meantime, other changes are already necessary. The traditional system can’t keep up with today’s rhythm.

    Part up office in The Hague
    Part up office in The Hague

    People don’t have to get a permanent job in a company; they can make use of talents that organizations themselves don’t utilize due to lack of a title to recognize and name this specific skill. Last year, I met people with titles such as: CEO of Whatever and Mystery Maker. On the other hand, corporations still need employees, and that is one of the most important questions they raise: how to attract them?

    That is where part up steals the word swarm by giving it a new meaning. People create a part up for their own projects; this also works for big companies or co-working communities with short-term projects. Once that is achieved, other people in that network are matched, teamed up and from that point on they can chose to help and co-create along with that part up members.

    Individuals contribute with their own set of knowledge and skills. In it people organize themselves just like insects or birds do in swarms, each person adds his/her own expertise to reach the common goal. They don’t need to be told what to do. It becomes an organic process.

    In a world where everyone can notice changes are happening quickly and most importantly, changes are needed, traditional organizations are running so they don’t get behind. Part up is an alternative as this configuration makes projects come to life by teaming up people with all kinds of different sets of skills to achieve the same goal in which they are genuinely interested in.