Maybe it's my personal situation that makes Guy Kawasaki's Enchanted so enchanting, or maybe it's all about the book. Regardless, Enchanted made me take action. My situation may be like many people who will be drawn to this book: I'm looking to inspire and persuade people about ideas. I've just finished my own book (watch forThe Plugged-In Manager this Fall) and am constantly working to find better ways to make the ideas sing across types of organizations and levels within organizations. The first thing Enchanted did for me was to help me create my personal position statement: Help people work with technology. That positioning statement is over twice as long as Guy's "Empower People," but that's the hand I've been dealt. Guy defines enchantment as "the process of delighting people with a product, service, organization, or idea" where the "outcome of enchantment is voluntary and long-lasting support that is mutually beneficial" (p. xix) -- but I think there must be a bit of spell-casting in there somewhere. If you've seen Guy talk you'll know what I mean. My first action took place on p. 35. I was so compelled to save the positioning statement in Evernote that I violated the flight attendant's admonishment to turn off all electrical devices. The rest of the book is equally compelling. Guy tends to use a Top Ten approach in his talks, but I'll stick to a Top Two in this instance. One - he invites you take an active role in working with the ideas:
- He gives an Enchantment Hall of Fame on p. 41 -- but leaves space for you to add your own examples.
- There is an excellent opportunity for a reality check on how you treat your employees on p. 156.
- The conclusion is a self-check of the ideas of Enchantment.
Two - he doesn't go it alone in building the story:
- He clearly identifies all the people who helped him in the process of writing the book, including an enchanting story about the cover.
- He notes that to be enchanting you should build an ecosystem/community rather than thinking that you can go it alone.
- Every chapter ends with a story of enchantment told by someone else.
- Finally, and very importantly for an academic, he cites his sources and describes the underlying research with an even hand. Robert Cialdini's work on influence appropriately gets plenty of use and the only source I felt was missing is Everett Rogers' work on innovations.
Should you go to one of Guy's talks? Yes. Should you watch one of his talks as a video? Yes. Should you read Enchantment? Absolutely. Over 60 reviews have noted that Enchanted is enchanting. We can't help ourselves. It is. I give thanks to Santa Clara University's Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship as they arranged for Guy to speak this week and surprised us by giving us all copies of the book. I also need to note that I've seen Guy speak several times and urge you to do so too. Sometimes I haven't been as engaged with the topic, but he is always inspiring in a value-added way. As you'll see in the book, he puts in his time and it shows. Thanks for that, Guy.