There are many ways to get people involved besides
coercion, putting someone in a tight spot, or otherwise using negative
reinforcement. The most powerful kind of participation is that which
generates enthusiasm and spreads of its own accord. At the core, with
or without a mandate, voluntary involvement is necessary for the very
best results.

My work in organizations since 1989 has primarily engaged economists,
technologists, researchers, scientists, accountants, administrators,
and engineers. None of these are very far out on the touchy-feely
continuum of personality types. Nonetheless, I am able to consistently
arouse their enthusiasm, enroll their voluntary participation, secure
their buy-in, and generate their contributions by appealing to their
professional spirit.

The best work raises the bar for both individuals and
organizational performance. A project or change initiative should never
downgrade one for the other.

sweet spot

Questions to Trigger
Professional Excitement when it comes to Change

1. What is the best possible outcome of this initiative in terms of
your career?
2. What professional breakthroughs can this effort be used to
facilitate?
3. What is the highest bar that has been set in your area of expertise,
and how can this program help you to exceed it?
4. What is your next step professionally, and how can this work help
you get there?

To master this approach, go beyond seeing communication as a way to get
your message out. Instead, generate interactions that lay the
foundation to a shared and improved future. This is how real, sustained
transformation happens.