Top Ten Quotes: Switch
Not long ago I took our High-Capacity Volunteers through Chip and Dan Heath’s Switch: How to Change Things When Change is Hard. When our team was mapping out 2020 reading assignments, none of us knew just how appropriate and timely this book would end up being. We are all in the process of changing a lot about leadership, life, and all things in between.
I’ve long told you that Switch is one of my all-time favorite books, and I’ve given away more copies than I can count. In typical Heath brother fashion, they weave strong data with compelling stories to create immediate applications. If you haven’t picked it up, I hope these soundbites will convince you:
- What looks like a people problem is often a situation problem.
- There is a clear asymmetry between the scale of the problem and the scale of the solution. Big problem, small solution.
- Ambiguity is the enemy. Any successful change requires a translation of ambiguous goals into concrete behaviors. In short, to make a switch, you need to script the critical moves.
- When you’re at the beginning, don’t obsess about the middle, because the middle is going to look different once you get there. Just look for a strong beginning and strong ending and get moving.
- Negative emotions tend to have a “narrowing effect” on our thoughts…To solve bigger, more ambiguous problems, we need to encourage open minds, creativity, and hope.
- Small targets lead to small victories, and small victories can often trigger a positive spiral of behavior.
- …to create and sustain change, you’ve got to act more like a coach and less like a scorekeeper. You’ve got to embrace a growth mindset and instill it in your team.
- Today, as you go through your day, notice how many times people have tweaked the environment to shape your behavior…If you change the path, you’ll change the behavior.
- Even when there is no ironclad way to do things, checklists can help people avoid blind spots in a complex environment.
- In situations where your herd has embraced the right behavior, publicize it. For instance, if 80 percent of your team submits time sheets on time, make sure the other 20 percent knows the group norm.
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