Sean Carasso, founder of Falling Whistles

Rick Wheatley March 7, 2012
Sean Carasso, founder of Falling Whistles

Have you ever seen or experienced something that you felt compelled to change? But you didn’t? Here’s an example of a guy who did. He witnessed a kind of cruelty toward children that he couldn’t have imagined. And then he started a global movement that campaigns against war in Congo while also helping those that have been hurt by it.

Our interview with Carasso covers topics that will be interesting to young business leaders and social entrepreneurs alike. We explore daring to fail, prototyping, growing up and believing that you could be the one to make a difference. Power – personal power aligned with greater purpose. Powerful stuff.

So, what does this have to do with sustainable leadership?

Carasso expresses experiences, learnings and fears that any leader will encounter as they grow into roles of influence and connect with their purpose. We think that many will recognize themselves in his reflections.

This is the first in a series of clips from this interview – more to come!

Part 1: What he saw in Congo & how the movement started

So, the boys, one of the things they told us was that the kids who were too small to carry a gun, they had been sent to the front lines of war armed with only a whistle. They’d been sent out as human shields. And the idea is that they would go out, blow the whistle to scare away the enemy, right? Make a lot of noise. And then failing that, they were supposed to receive the bullets with their bodies, and in falling create a blockade for other soldiers to hide behind.

Part 2: The power of the individual, owning power & failure

Look, I think that sort of one of the great truths of our time is that we live in a moment where the individual has more power than at any other time in human history. I mean, we’ve got a “New York Times” in our back pocket. That megaphone, it’s not shifting hands, it has shifted hands. The power is yours, the power is mine. Fareed Zakaria, who talked about two dudes with a flag in Jerusalem can shift billions of dollars in military spending. I wrote a stupid blog for War Region, and we’re building a global coalition for peace in Congo. The power of the individual is just enormous. That to me is what the symbol of the whistle is really about.

Part 3: What we’ve learned