learn to sell people the problem, not the solution. People buy because they have a problem.
learn to listen. Not a platitude, an actual skill. Listen to people by not looking at them, being distracted by moving faces, look at the ground, or your hands, just listen to their voices like they are speaking on the radio, not the telly. I’ve just started this, and it’s amazing how much I must have been missing.
don’t bother trying to change Corporate. They are Corporate for a reason. Corporate is never at the vanguard of real change.
frontline is where it’s at, they get all the grief from customers, they are most grounded in how things really work and least convinced by the status quo.
don’t call it anything. If it has a name, people, including you, will waste time arguing what it is and isn’t.
call it something. Otherwise nobody can ever talk about it
know that nothing big or sustainable will happen unless the top management do it too.
people don’t change their mind because they are persuaded to by others. They persuade themselves.
you might have been persuaded by reading a book, most will not be, but you won’t know who will. Annoying isn’t it?
“If you want to teach people a new way of thinking, don’t teach. Give them a tool, the use of which will lead to it” -Buckminster Fuller
get managers to the work, listening to actual customers. No substitute!
exploit dissatisfaction with current methods work and repeated cycles of behaviour
encourage curiosity in new different ways of work (see point 34)
retain good humour and a sense of irony. You want to be miserable for unknown numbers of years?
assiduously collect data that shows anomalies in the official data. Store it all neatly, ready for when it might be best deployed, which could be years.
nobody easily changes their fundamental beliefs. But you will repeatedly forget this and it will surprise you every time.
successfully arguing the rational reasons for change relies on a shared mental model. This why it is useless as a tactic to change minds. Rational arguments are for tools and details.
Experiment. That’s all you can ever do, so best make it explicit to yourself that’s what you are doing so you can get the most learning regardless of the result.
conversations not presentations, chat in corridors or at people’s desks, not across acres of boardroom table.
people don’t buy change. They buy solutions to their current problems. Focus on that.
“You have enemies? Good. That means you’ve stood up for something, sometime in your life.”-Winston Churchill
51. You will find people who sympathise in the oddest of unexpected places.
get really good at communicating, in print, person and any other form you could develop a talent in. The vast majority of corporate communication is terrible. Stand out by being interesting and you’ve got a head start. (see point 35)
be curious. There’s useful stuff everywhere. Lessons, metaphors, you’re knee-deep in them if you keep your eyes and mind open.
keep it serious. Don’t repel people by looking flippant.
if you’re a junior back-office keyboard-rattling desk-jockey, your first milestone is to get someone credible as the public face. Yours shouldn’t be it.
be authentic. The worst that can happen is people wont like it.
it’s not about you.
61. don’t argue.
create pull, it is the lubricant of change.
don’t push, people push right back. You do.
think on this: Daniel Kahneman: … there is actually enormous resistance, I think, within organizations to implementing programs that would improve the rationality of their decisions. Charlie Rose: Why? Daniel Kahneman: Well because it creates difficulty for the leadership. The moment you have a system that is a more structured system – then that system can be used to second guess the decisions of people. And people don’t like to be second guessed. So there is a lot of interest in ways to improve rationality but … when it comes to implementation enthusiasm wanes distinctly. … because you are naked and this is a real problem.
witty goes down better than earnest. keep it wafer light.
talk and walk as if it’s already happened. “Dress for the job you want.” careerists say, revolutionaries say “Be the change you want to see in the world“
lob hand grenades of fabulousness into every meeting you are in. Eventually when you lob grenades of data and truth, people are primed to be receptive.
learn to be fabulous in general. People are more receptive to style than vile, learn and adapt to your raw materials. Humans.
it’s amazing what you can accomplish when you don’t care who gets credit. Don’t care.
be inclusive. don’t be exclusive.
make everyone happy. No, this is not possible, forget it, nothing you can do about it so don’t worry yourself.
it will be the best of times, it will be the worst of times. Better than being the dullest of times.
everyone was young once, this is your youth right now, regardless of how old you are.
mistakes are part of the fun. It’s called learning.
there’s no end, no triumphal parade. You won’t know you’re done til afterwards.
when you’re older, you won’t care. So don’t waste time right now worrying. Enjoy and learn.
go to bed at night glad you might be able to make a difference whilst still having clean running water and free healthcare. It’s not a real gamble, whatever the pay-off
laugh. It’s better than not.
be good at maths. It’s better than not.
realise you might be in the wrong place at the wrong time. In which case, it doesn’t matter if it never works. Not your fault, the only fault is not trying. “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take”
imagine it all does work. Perhaps you might not recognise it? Would that be so bad? If you need to see it happen and have everyone know it was down to you, should you be doing it at all? There are other easier things that people will thank you for.
act like it doesn’t matter if you succeed, as you probably won’t. The odds are against you.
boil it all down into small quotable sentences. Say them out-loud, do they sound silly? Make them not silly, when you’re done, repeat them out-loud. Eventually everything sounds silly when they are repeated often enough, this is what other people hear, so don’t say small quotable sentences. Just think them, then speak like you normally do.
learn improvisation. People are cheered off stage after inventing stuff they’ve never said before in public. Imagine how good it would be to be properly in the moment and listening to somebody, so you can speak to them truly? You’re half way there, chatting is never scripted, just learn a bit more than chatting. Chatting is seeing with one eye closed. Instead, listen then speak with both eyes open.
“If you make people think they’re thinking, they’ll love you; but if you really make them think, they’ll hate you”–Don Marquis
think not what your organisation can do for you, think not what you can do for your organisation, think purpose. These are 3 different things. It would be great if all 3 overlapped though.
there are 4 more bullet points left, and I don’t think I should try and fill, just to make the numbers.
this is my third last bullet point. It’s not about me saying and typing, as I know very little. I keep meaning to type “the idiot’s clause” to be appended beneath everything I type, a warning that I just have a blog, anyone can, but Idon’t necessarily know anything at all. I could be completely wrong.