In preparation for an upcoming business meeting, I am reading A Sense of Urgency by John P. Kotter.
His basic premise is that the primary reason so many objectives are never reached and initiatives fail is a lack of a true sense of urgency. Instead many organizations and individuals suffer through a complacency that often goes unnoticed or a false sense of urgency that involves much activity but little real impact.
Great Leaders win over the hearts and minds of others.
I’m only about a third of the way through his book and haven’t reached any of his strategies at this point, but I was drawn to a section subtitled Aim for the Heart. He states that while knowledge is important, “emotions influence action even more.”
He cites the example of Martin Luther King, Jr.’s I Have A Dream speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial.
He “did not reduce anger among black and contentment or anxiety about whites by announcing on the Washington Mall, “I have a strategic plan.” A mind driven case could easily be made, and was made by many people at the time: treatment of blacks was inconsistent with some of the country’s most cherished values…and hurt people; un-Christian behavior toward blacks undermined Christianity itself…”
King’s example is fully rational and reaches an emotional part of the heart. Mindless emotion is not the point. The key he is advocating is to make your case in such a way that is directed to reach the mind by aiming at the heart. I usually apply this type of book to areas beyond the world of pharmaceutical sales. How do I apply this as a husband, a parent and a teacher? How would you?