The Group is Smarter than the Individual

Mike Oliver shared the profound thought that the room is the smartest person meaning that the collection of people who make up a classroom or team make that room the smartest. That no single individual alone is smarter than the collection of individuals working together when they combine their experiences and knowledge together. Mike shares a great story to highlight this. Mike beautifully called this the group creating a poem as they work together to create a new piece of knowledge that only they could have created. We have an opportunity each time we encounter a collection of people to lift ourselves and others to new heights of knowledge and experiences. Listen to more great insights from Mike on Spotify at

Mike also shared the beautiful poem “The Calf-Path” by Sam Foss that illustrates profoundly how much can be lost when we don’t use the collective knowledge of the people on our teams and around us. I provided a YouTube video of the poem below but it can also be found at When we harness the collective knowledge of the people on our teams in our communities we can learn how to discover new ways to accomplish amazing things, or just enhance our way of doing things as it is exposed to the diverse ideas of our teams. We also include the members of our teams more and help the people around us realize that they are capable of finding new paths and dreams of their own. We do not have to follow the paths that were laid so many years ago and we can build new roads that get us to destinations we had yet envisioned as we harness the collective wisdom of the group.

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