This is the first reader question we have answered in the Five Friends blog. It seems many want to know how we all got started in this business and we are happy to share that with you. Remember, if you have a question, be sure to let one of us [...]
From Mark Sanborn: The biggest challenge businesses will face in the next five years is meeting increasing customer expectations. There is a current dilemma that will only get worse: the more you do for customers, the more they expect. Excellent service providers scramble to meet the expectations of customers who [...]
Five award-winning authors and speakers who just happen to be great friends get together to address important questions facing business, the country, and individual success. They answer this question in this edition: What ONE thing would you do to fix the economy? Be ready to be challenged.
The first two parts of this blog series dealt with what went wrong when the National Speakers Association announced a name change and re-branding effort at its annual convention on July 2. Today we look at what went right.
The majority of the world spent the last five days living their life. A small slice of the universe who make their living selling ideas, however, were agitating themselves into a frenzy. In case you missed it, the National Speakers Association, an association of which I am a member, decided to re-brand itself and change its name to PLATFORM. This is a first world problem. In the context of all of the turmoil in the world, the re-naming of this 41-year old association ranks right up there with … well almost nothing. And yet, people on all sides of the argument lit up the blogosphere and social media channels supporting their positions … even if it meant refusing to consider that others might be equally right in their own stance (see my blog on “Is It Always Right to be Right” for more on that phenomenon.)
There’s a quote about leaders and followers that suggests “If you’re not the lead dog, the view never changes.” For many brands, that’s certainly true. We all understand there are a limited number of spots at the top and that in each category, there can only be one market leader. It’s also true that most brands will never even sniff the position at the front of their respective pack. But that doesn’t mean you have to resign yourself, or your brand to follower status. Whether you’re in second place, third place, or last place, by adopting a challenger brand mentality and embracing three distinct “states,” you can step out of your role of follower and start creating a whole new view.
The willingness and urgency to change are based on emotional readiness not intellectual understanding. If intellectual understanding – knowing what we should do – was all it took to change, the gap between realizing we need to do something different and the work of implementing that change would be non-existent. But that’s not how it works.
Why did you write a book about change? The host of a recent radio interview was being polite and, I suspect, genuinely interested. But the question is an important one—a quick search on Amazon.com found over 150,000 book titles that have something to do with change. Let’s assume that some of those titles are duplicates for hardcover, paperback, Kindle, etc. That still leaves thousands of books written on the subject. Aren’t those enough? The short answer is, “No.”
Scott Keller and Carolyn Aiken, consultants at McKinsey & Company, suggest that 80 percent of what leaders care about and talk about when trying to enlist support for change does not matter to 80 percent of the workforce. To gain the commitment for the change that you want, you must connect with people where they are. You do that by making the change relevant and real.
This week’s blog is a rant about the sequester that went in place in March. If you are sick and tired of the discussion, check back next week for something else. If you want to understand the impact of irresponsible leadership, read on. I promise this will step on everyone’s toes.