The penguin principle

Why we humans can be compared to penguins

The penguin principle

Today I was scrolling and came across an interesting video from a German professor. The video went under the name “ badger penguin prinzip ”.

A principle of the mass psychology .

A special phenomenon that, given the circumstances, has caught my attention in the past year.

Because if you look closely, you will see that we humans are quite similar to penguins.

May I explain it to you?

The penguin principle

Penguins are pretty mean

You wouldn’t say that, but it is.

Okay, maybe it’s really smart before, not that mean. But let me take you into the world of the penguin.

Somewhere in Antarctica, on an ice floe, is a group of penguins. For the sake of convenience, let’s take the little penguin, which is funny.

They stand there on the ice floe, doing their thing and living their lives. Nothing wrong so far.


But the penguin also has to eat now and then, then they put it back in the sea where there is enough swimming around what the penguin likes.

Now comes the mean.

The Orca, a natural enemy of our friend, also swims in that sea (we are already talking about it all the time, so we can call the penguin our friend now, don’t you think?).

You have to watch how they determine who jumps into the water first.

The penguins go to the edge of the ice floe in a large group. They wait (characteristic of the penguin) further and further, and further… Until the first in the group has no choice to jump into the water.

Not knowing what’s swimming in that water and what’s going to happen.

Damnnnn, you see, this is just unbelievably mean. And are they going to help him / her? No!

The other penguins start to observe what is happening.

Is their “buddy” eaten? Then they stay nice on the ice floe. If their buddy is not eaten, the water is safe to jump in too.

Hopsakee, the whole crowd in it!

This brief moment is the reference for our great friend the penguin to go for a swim or not.

That brief observation of a few seconds to minutes.

Pretty weird right? Just check if everything is okay and then go into the water yourself, while at a somewhat greater distance there may be some danger.

And this is why we look like penguins

We also prefer to wait until someone else does something first. This is to check whether everything is going well, and then make the choice yourself.

“I do it too”


“Go on, I’m doing nothing at all”

We prefer to push someone forward, they can give it a try and then we decide for ourselves whether we go or not.

We do this in our private life, but also from a business point of view.

We’re like penguins.

And at some point the mass psychology look around the corner.

Case “ Everyone does it, so I’ll just go and do it ”. After all, you’d be crazy not to. After all, if you don’t, you’re the mallard in the group.

Or wild penguin, but just how you want to see it.

You just don’t have a choice anymore, you have to participate.

Whether you support it or not. Whether it is rational what is happening or not. That doesn’t matter at all, because that’s not the point.

It’s about what the masses do.

It’s about what you can justify against what the majority do.

Do you go with the crowd or do you want to constantly justify yourself by sticking your head above ground level?

That is the question to ask yourself.

And then you can say with confidence that we are really like penguins.

Hi, my name is Jan Willem

Hi, my name is Jan Willem

Online marketer, speaker and business coach. In addition to these topics, I actually write about a lot of things that concern me, just because I think this is cool to do. Do you want me to tell you stories to create movement? Then just contact us by clicking on the picture.