What is the biggest reason for companies to present you with the following (often unsolicited) data?
- Product reviews on any e-commerce site like Amazon
- Trending topics on social media platforms like Twitter
- Customer testimonials on any website that you visit
It is to create Social Proof to influence our decision.
Social proof is one of the most powerful psychological tools used to motivate people to act in a specific manner. As per Robert Cialdini, author of Influence, “Social proof is the tendency to see an action as more appropriate when others are doing it.”
Do we always take other’s opinion seriously? It looks like we don’t. We look for confirmation only in two scenarios:
- When we are unsure of a particular action, we look around for validation
- The people who validate a particular action seem similar to us
How some of the successful leaders do it subtly to achieve maximum long term participation in organizational Transformational initiatives?
Celebrating the early adopters (especially in the junior and middle management) in different forums by senior leadership – Most of us enjoy limelight. Such a public acknowledgement by a Leader provides the encouragement for others to follow suit. Many managers share acknowledgement posts for their team members (with specific details) on LinkedIn and other social media networks to felicitate few and motivate others.
Using the power of storytelling at various levels – We humans love stories. They have many benefits. Stories stick to our minds, breed familiarity, help get the objective understood, motivate, aspire and often create FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out), ultimately leading the audience to act in a preferred way. So, when Leaders use storytelling regularly in their network, it works like charm on the employees. Their urge to replicate the success becomes manifold and that becomes a driving force to sustain the momentum of transformation further. The key to using this tool are exceptional narration skills and collection of stories that employees could relate to.
Barrack Obama’s 2008 presidential election victory speech was a beautiful mix of gripping storytelling skills and artful use of subtle social proof to motivate the audience that the change was their dream and together it is they, who would help him achieve it for the country.
Transformation remains one of the key challenges for an organization in its attempt to evolve; though a lack of it is often a sure shot way to stagnate. While the last century was about managing change, organizations today have a bigger devil to deal with – an exponential rate of change. A truly prudent Transformational Leader would anticipate the change before others, implement it diligently, make it sustainable and create history while the others who don’t, would be lost forever. After all history is created by winners only!
Change is one of those necessary evils in Life. Evil since it forces many like a caterpillar to move out of their comfort zone and necessary as that is the only way to realize one’s full potential as a butterfly.
As we conclude this series, we hope to have addressed some of the key challenges faced by you while implementing change. The question remains now, how would you use this guide to further strengthen your Transformation endeavor?
This blog is part of the Transformational Leadership series
Transformational Leadership aims to achieve significant changes across teams and organizations by inspiring and motivating participants to work towards a common goal (inspired by their aspirations) that not only brings long term prosperity to the organization but also helps the employees expand their own potential and fulfill their intrinsic dreams.
We present to you a series of data backed posts on some of the most pressing issues of Transformational Leadership with real life business examples of how they have been overcome by some of the world’s most famous Transformational Leaders.