What Do You Stand For?
What does the word 'maverick' mean for you?
The reason we ask is that yesterday we ran a focus group for our first product that we are launching in October. As part of what was an excellent session, there was a lively debate about the word 'maverick'.
To be clear, we chose 'Maverick' as part of our title very deliberately. We know the word is provocative and it was clear that people in the room had strong views on what it means to them. So do we.
The Two Sides of the Maverick
For some, being maverick starts at not fitting in and being a square peg in a round hole. Take this further, and it means being anti-establishment, being a rebel, having a punk attitude, sticking two fingers up to the system. A lot of people identify with this, and there is pride that comes from being a big outlier from the norm.
We love a lot of these types of people here at Mavericks Unlimited. However, we don't think that 'maverickism' is purely for the self-identified mavericks.
We choose to define Mavericks as true-hearted, authentic people, unleashing their superpowers and making a positive impact on the world. So, our view is that anyone can be Maverick to a greater or lesser extent. What then is the difference?
The Rebel Punk Maverick
'Maverick' was one of the key words used to describe Donald Trump during his presidential campaign in 2016. Built on a populist platform, Trump caught the imagination of a segment of American society by railing against establishment politics that he contended favoured the elites and trod on everyday folk.
Since being in power though, his presidency has been less than ideal by almost any and every metric. Divisions with the Republican party, a huge turnover of key Whitehouse staff, continuing twitter tirades and an inability to achieve anything legislatively, points to an administration in some kind of chaos.
For the rebel, punk maverick that Trump portrayed himself as part of this identity is built on reacting and responding AGAINST the perceived establishment. Make that maverick the centre of the establishment, and it has nothing to rebel against...but it still has the rebellious energy that it has to do something with...and chaos is the result.
The Maverick Who Isn’t A Maverick?
Contrast this with John McCain, the Republican Senator from Arizona. McCain most certainly doesn't look maverick compared to Trump. Aside from an astonishing history in the armed services, McCain was the establishment candidate against Obama in 2008.
We would call McCain a Maverick (with a capital M). Why?
McCain believes in politics in the right way and looking after the American people. He believes that repealing Obamacare will be destructive for millions of Americans. So, he decided to go his own way and vote down the Obamacare repeal bill.
McCain stood against his own party and knew what his vote would mean, even so, had the integrity to do what is he felt to be right.
What Do You Stand For?
To be true-hearted and authentic, you are not just reacting against something else. This points to an internal code or set of ethics that are being followed to intentionally create a positive impact in the world. That requires self-awareness, social awareness and conviction.
Anyone that does this can be a Maverick.
So our challenge to you is to ask yourself: WHAT DO YOU STAND FOR? What is that code of ethic that you want to bring forward through your true-hearted authenticity?
Over To You!
We want to hear from you. We appreciate that many of you will have a strong view of what being 'maverick' and it will be different to what we believe. Equally, for others, our perspective will highly resonate. We would love to hear from you and spark a debate about what being a Maverick truly means.
So leave us a comment below and tell us what 'Maverick' means for you and what you stand for!
*For those who follow us, you’ll know that we always spell Maverick with a capital ‘M’ – you can read about why in this article here. For this article, we’re going to use both to help us explain our feelings around it.