ChangeThis: Issue 67
February 10, 2010
The latest issue of ChangeThis has been published for all of you out there in the thinking public. Take it out for a spin tonight. Introduce it to your friends.
How To Fascinate: Why Your Brand Should Do A Shot Of Jgermeister by Sally Hogshead
"If you're under age 45 or so, there's a good chance that you've tried Jgermeister. However the odds are low—quite low—that you actually enjoy the taste. And that's okay. Few people do. Very, very few. I'll wager that most of the people who make Jgermeister don't like the taste of Jgermeister. Yet the brand continues to grow at an astonishing rate. If so many people actively dislike the taste, how does the company manage to sell 83 million bottles a year?
With sales increasing up to 40% per year since 1985, Jgermeister is the most popular drink nobody likes.
Many companies successfully advertise products and services that consumers don't necessarily need (bottled water, luxury cars) or even enjoy (backache pills, oil changes, burial plots). But here's a brand that manages to sell an extraordinary volume—at a premium price point, no less—of a product that people don't even want, and more to the point, actively dislike."
How to Read a Business Book by Todd Sattersten
"The problem? 11,000. That is the number of business books published in the United States every year. Placed one atop another, the stack would stand as tall as a ninety-story building.
Recommendations reduce the noise. Suggestions from friends and colleagues are best, because they know you and your circumstances. Reliable media sources that regularly review business books, like The Wall Street Journal and BusinessWeek, are also a great source for slimming the pile. Blogs, tweets, and Facebook statuses can be just as valuable. Online booksellers offer customer reviews on their product pages, and physical bookstores have helpful employees who can help you find a book
Worthwhile as they are, recommendations merely reduce the size of the pile. Our next step is to determine which book is right one."
Found In Translation: The Case for Pictures in Business
by Dan Roam
"Twenty-five years of helping business leaders around the world develop ideas has taught me three things:
1. There is no more powerful way to come up with a new idea than to draw a simple picture. 2. There is no faster way to develop and test an idea than to draw a simple picture. 3. There is no more effective way to share an idea with other people than to draw a simple picture.
While good speaking is engaging and inspiring, we need to recognize the limitations of our words. Let's be clear: there's nothing wrong with words. What's wrong is that they're not enough.
This is where pictures come in. Whether drawing them, looking at them, or talking about them, pictures add an extraordinary amount to our ability to think, to remember, and to do."
The Laws of the Econosphere by Craig Thomas
"I call the environment in which we live the Econosphere. It is the world created by and governing of human decision making, and it is our home. It provides for us and nurtures us. It reacts to and informs our every interaction and, if we understand it, allows us to optimize the use of our life spans moment by moment. This environment is not, however, one made of oxygen and hydrogen, oil and steel, high mountains and low plains. Rather, the Econosphere is our social environment, where we work, live, raise our families, and govern ourselves. We need to start thinking about the economy as a holistic, natural system. To those who are inclined to see it, it is breathtaking choreography on a global scale with billions of performers, each one in character, playing his or her unique role so that the entire ensemble shines. The Econosphere provides for us, yet it is also of us."
The Myth of Overnight Success by Barrie Bergman
"Most of us are seduced by the idea of overnight success. We want to believe the myth that success is easy to come by. But success in business takes time, energy and hard work—lots of all three.
Personally, I've never met an overnight success. I've met people who've done something well for a long time and were suddenly discovered. Then everyone assumed they came out of nowhere, that their fame happened overnight.
But the real truth is that it takes a long time to be an overnight success."
The Best Communicator in the World by Jon Wortmann
"I hear people every day offer very valid excuses why they don't try to improve how they communicate. Some people think it's too hard. Others don't know where to go for help. The most repeated excuse from people at work and in their personal lives that could be so much happier with some focused, intentional new habits: 'I don't have time.' Every single one of us can communicate in a way that makes it easier for people to like spending time with us. If you feel shy, nervous, or afraid, you're not crazy, you're not alone, and today is the day you stop letting ugly communication damage your relationships. Authentic communication can become as natural as breathing—when you pay attention to a few essential aspects of what connects people."