Thursday, October 15, 2009

What's in your message - Information (OR) Persuasion?


Dear you,
What do you make out of most of the communication that you do? Would it categorize as Informative (or) Persuasive? Does your e-mails tend to go mostly with FYI (For your information) tag (or) with FYA (For your action) tag? Even when it is the latter, how much emphasis do you put in selling the action that you want the other person to take? Is n't real that most of communication tends to be informational kind. Ofcourse, we do tend to mark certain messages with FYA tag which in other words calling for the other person attention and action.
But even when calling for other person's action, are we persuasive enough? Is n't a point to ponder?

To inform (or) to persuade is key a consideration. There is a good changethis manifesto which covers this issue at good length.
This is actually preview of the book titled "Move the World" by Dean Brenner. As you would notice in the article, Dean argues rather forcefully that all communications that we need to make ought to be of "Persuasion" kind and none should be of merely of information kind. It is almost similar along the lines of an expression becoming common place which goes as "All Speaking outside our homes is Public Speaking".

Another key point made by Dean is that Communication is a tool for great leverage. The title of the book is aptly titled because as per author, the power of communication is immense that it could literally move people and the world, if utilized well. Archimedes is supposed to have famously said that "Give me large enough lever and a place to stand and i will move the earth(world)" which in essense conveys the power of leverage. Another great Greek personality Socrates is supposed to have said something entirely different. "If you want to move the world, first you should move yourself". So, which view would you subscribe to?

A key element of the "Move the World" book is the helpful mnemonic with which the method of communication is defined. It is called GAP method where

G - stands for the Goal, that you(the communicator) is seeking to achieve and how clear the communicator is about the overall objective to be achieved with help of communication.

A - stands for Audience awareness, basically customizing the message for audience

P - stands for your Plan for persuasion in your communication (as opposed to mere information)

Does this want you to rethink the way you are approaching your key communications? Feel free to post your comments or write back?

-J2M (Journey to Mastery - Hopefully it is not a Mystery :-) )

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Be a fan of "Skill", not just a "Knowledge" fan !!!

Dear you,

Don't we tend to over-emphasize Knowledge but not enough on the Skills. I often see not enough clarity between the two in the minds of people. Until very recently i hav been guilty of mixing the two myself. Well, I would NOT say that i got it all figured out but i would call this musing yet another small step in the never ending J2M :-).

Knowledge is a necessary but not a sufficient condition. It is very apparent with its' focus on "Know"ing .. it is right there in the word, is n't it? . However, skill emphasizes the "do" in other words action part of the equation. Now, just to get ourselves a little energized on the "Skills" aspect i have gotten aroud writng this musing, can't really call it a poetry :-( ..


Can we become fans of acquiring the necessary "Skill"

However it would require definite "Will"
Might involve taking a bitter "Pill"
Surely there is considerable "Drill"
So that eventually for us, the task becomes run-of-the-"Mill"

Now, are we willing to "kill" all our "ill"s in getting there?
Not pursuing this might result in a hefty "Bill"
Well, we may never get our complete "Fill"
However, should it stop from figuring out our "Gill"s?

Now do i hear you(the reader) saying "Chill" :-)
I hope i have not gone over the "hill"
Because the task at hand is not really that "uphill"
And a real skill fan will tell us about the "thrill"

With this i rest my "appeal".


Note : I acknowledge Sudip Majumdar(LBS colleague) for providing the initial fodder on this thread. First few lines are entirely his from a training program few months ago, i have just extended the idea fuerther.

-J2M (Journey to Mastery - Hopefully it is not a Mystery :-)