Sunday, June 20, 2010

Changing Minds - The Importance of Character

Whether you are a leader of a nation, corporation, organization, club or other collection of people, one of your first tasks is to get people working in the same direction.  In prior posts we have talked about the importance of vision in bringing people together behind one cause.  But we have not talked about what to do when you have a vision that is not necessarily shared by others in the group.  The problem is not that they don't understand the vision.  They understand perfectly.  However, they disagree with the goal, methods, do not trust that the desired outcome is appropriate, or just generally think the idea is wrongheaded.

What do you do to change the minds of the people you wish to lead into the future?

In his book Changing Minds, Howard Gardner takes on the challenge of describing this process of bringing your message to your audience, and of successfully changing how people think and feel about the goals you have set before them.  Although there are many factors to consider, in this blog entry I want to focus on just one that I believe to be so powerful that if it is not properly considered and respected it will knock the blocks out from under everything you are trying to accomplish.