How The Newcomers Always Bring The Jet Fuel 🚀

Josia Nakash
7 min readFeb 1, 2020
Author Kimberly Davis

I woke up this morning in Israel to a stunning post by Kimberly Davis, who has always been connected to us, but joined the HumansFirst call for the first time yesterday. It was a moving tribute to our host Kevin Monroe, who puts so much good will and intention into making the magic happen in these calls.

Here’s what Kimberly wrote about Kevin Monroe

“So this afternoon I jumped on the HumansFirst Hangout and it blew my mind. I was so inspired that I knew I needed to make some public proclamations. You know how there are people who come into your life and seem to bring a whole new energy and dimension you never realized you were missing but couldn’t imagine living without? Well over the course of the past few years, there have been three people who’ve expanded my world exponentially. Since talking about them takes up an entire post, here’s the third (the first two are in the comments): If you were on the Hangout call today, it will come as absolutely no surprise to you that the third #DifferenceMaker I want to celebrate is Kevin Monroe. Wow. I’ve known Kevin for a little over a year and his enormous heart, genuine curiosity and desire to authentically connect, and his passion for making a difference (not to mention his technical savvy) never cease to amaze me. Inspired by and collaborating with Mike Vacanti’s HumanFirst movement, Kevin’s weekly hangout has grown to almost 60 highly engaged, incredibly passionate people in a blink. His podcast is consistently excellent. Kevin knows how to make others feel seen and valued in a way that truly matters and his ripple effect is changing lives.”

I just noticed that she also did a DifferenceMaker tribute to Mike Sr. Vacanti

The other newcomer who made an impact yesterday was Keith Kuperman who is now proudly a disaster program manager at the Red Cross. He told us how he had left the world of making a profit behind after Hurricane Harvey because he wanted to “CREATE A POSITIVE CHANGE FOR HUMANITY.” I suggest checking out his Twitter for some inspiration …

We were talking about when leaders or coaches need to ask for permission to insert new things into the process, and I believe it was Teresa who brought up the example of a coach and player. She was saying how in that situation, it’s not necessary to ask for permission every single time. Brian Buck: “Are you coaching toward a goal they care about? If I start talking about something we didn’t agree about … that’s where you need permission.”

Somewhere around that point we got into a very deep discussion comparing the world of sports to the military. We noted how these are two places where we are totally willing to leave our ego behind and take command from the top, knowing that it’s in our benefit to do so.

“In the military, I assign my will to the will of the whole — it’s necessary or people die. This doesn’t happen in the corporate world.” Mike Vacanti

My big question is why? Wouldn’t we be better off operating like that everywhere? What’s so great about us supposedly having free will inside a certain framework — has it really made us happy? I don’t think so. I think people are far happier in places like the military and being part of a sports team, where there is a goal greater than yourself to strive for. That’s what really fulfills us as humans.

We should really think about why “assigning our will” to a higher, collective purpose gives us a sense of fulfillment that is far greater than fulfilling our personal will. Then we should think about setting up similar conditions everywhere — in organizations, companies and cities all over the world.

Imagine if tomorrow you woke up and your entire city “assigned their will” to the will of the whole. That would mean that everyone would stop thinking about their narrow/limited needs and would be more focused on the well being of the collective. We would be competing to do more for the whole regardless of our status in society.

I was the second female sniper instructor in the IDF back in the early ‘80’s , which was considered a man’s job in those days. I had two terror rifles with scopes, and another rifle to take with me when I left the base. We used to get up at 4am to get to the targets by sunrise. I remember being totally pumped and jumping out of bed every day — very excited to get to work training a new batch of soldiers. We volunteer two whole years of our life for the army (men volunteer for three years). But think what we get in return — an incredible demonstration of the benefits of discipline and having so much responsibility at such a young age. Not to mention the sense of camaraderie among the soldiers. It is a great melting pot for a country made up so many different cultures. And most importantly — a genuine sense of concern and ownership of this special country we live in that you can’t get anywhere else.

To be perfectly honest, the secret behind our tremendous “Startup Nation” success is that many of our high-tech founders come from elite military intelligence units. They form very strong connections in the army that are often the foundation of their life as civilians.

I was also “recruited” into a swim team from birth in the small town of Rosemere (Quebec) that I grew up in. I remember getting up every day at the crack of dawn to do laps. That started from the age of 5, and I remember loving the feeling of belonging and being part of something important that the grownups were engaged in.

In Israel it was the dance classes from age 13 to 18 (up to the army) that kept me highly motivated about life.

That’s me on the right ….

When you look at these examples from my adolescent years, my dancing and my army service, think about how much good energy we are wasting today with our youth being glued to their screens.

Imagine how incredible it would be to “recruit” people to a higher purpose where we are all willing to dedicate so much of our best attributes for the good of the whole. And we do this happily, with no resistance. That is the future.

Here is the rest of our discussion that continued far past the official hour:

Linda Simpson: “People know their role in that 60 minutes (of a sports event) but something prior to the event could impact their laser focus. Leaders bring everyone together to make sure that focus is there.” (Linda’s son in the military.)

Teresa: “Kobe died. Players had to get on the field with heightened emotions but they still performed. They have that level of self-awareness — athletes and in the military — it’s ingrained in them to put it aside.”

Kathy Holmes: “With a team only having the one goal — there is agility that occurs; they have to process a few things at once. Organizations don’t give enough agility for their employees to do it — due to this conformity space. I believe that looking at a sports team or military team — there are some components that can translate.” (Her husband is in the military.)

Arlene:I can only create the environment and my team can only build off the trust & love that I give. I was chatting with the CEO: I will share a story that’s vulnerable and tag our executive leadership. That’s how I create an environment where the workers can do it. Maybe I can create an environment of trust by showing my other side — I’ll take the heat.”

Keith: When the red cross goes in — we operate as the military. We follow an incident action plan: #1 is the safety and welfare of our staff.”


The strength and quality of the whole is measured by the diversity of its parts.

We can all dedicate ourselves to a greater goal, without eliminating or trying to change any detail. The general work for the sake of the collective is toward a goal, with the individual development of each part happening within that general system. So if people are not fully developed — it harms the whole. When we try to change people, or stop people from developing according to their natural tendencies, we are harming the power of the whole. We do not yet have tools to calculate the result of humanity working together in harmony, because these are infinite equations.