Posts Tagged ‘leadership’

The basic psychological premise behind effective persuasion is that people only do things for emotional reasons. Logic is something they use to justify a decision they’ve already made or an action they’ve already taken. Effective persuasion therefore relies on appeals to emotion rather than appeals to reason. This is why Dale Carnegie’s book How to Win Friends and Influence People pairs the idea of influencing people with the idea of making them like you, and why one of the most popular quotes I have seen on the topic of persuasion is all about playing on people’s subconscious emotions: People will do anything for those who encourage their dreams, justify their failures, allay their fears, confirm their suspicions and help them throw rocks at their enemies. ~ Blair Warren, sales copy writer Encourage their dreams. This bypasses the other person’s conscious mind by tapping into her subconscious need or desire for respect, prestige, etc. Justify their […]

A study of our academic elite In an Atlantic Monthly article from 2001, “The Organization Kid,” David Brooks writes about going to Princeton University to learn about “what the young people who are going to be running our country in a few decades are like.”What Brooks found with respect to the over-structured lives of the Princeton undergraduates he spoke to is very close to how I remember my undergraduate classmates at Harvard from 1999 to 2003: I asked several students to describe their daily schedules, and their replies sounded like a session of Future Workaholics of America: crew practice at dawn, classes in the morning, resident-adviser duty, lunch, study groups, classes in the afternoon, tutoring disadvantaged kids in Trenton, a cappella practice, dinner, study, science lab, prayer session, hit the StairMaster, study a few hours more. One young man told me that he had to schedule appointment times for chatting with his friends. No time […]