This amazing picture was emailed to me by a colleague earlier today. It is of a human representation of the Statue of Liberty, made up of 18,000 soldiers preparing to go to war, and was taken in 1918 at Camp Dodge in Iowa. However, while the picture is interesting it is the facts that are amazing.
Base to Shoulder: 150 feet
Right Arm: 340 feet
Widest part of arm holding torch: 12 1/2 feet
Right thumb: 35 feet
Thickest part of body: 29 feet
Left hand length: 30 feet
Face: 60 feet
Nose: 21 feet
Longest spike of head piece: 70 feet
Torch and flame combined: 980 feet
Number of men in flame of torch: 12,000
Number of men in torch: 2,800
Number of men in right arm: 1,200
Number of men in body, head and balance of figure only: 2,000
Total men: 18,000
Notice the proportions - two thirds of the total number make up the flame alone! By contrast only one ninth makes up the head, body and rest of the figure.
I couldn't help but wonder if this isn't symbolic of life. Could this be a metaphor for the effort it takes to achieve our life purpose or to succeed in meeting a goal? Whether success is to develop a useful business or a popular brand or simply "to make a difference"? If we draw the analogy that the flame is employee engagement or strategic alignment it certainly seems to be about right. What do you think?