The Bookworm Sez: Make your own memorable moments
It was quite the event.
Your staff really outdid themselves, and you were proud of them. Everybody pitched in, clients were overjoyed, and there wasn’t one attendee who didn’t leave without a smile and a promise to come back next year. In “The Power of Moments” by Chip Heath and Dan Heath, you’ll see how to make your event even better then.
Think back to all the biggest, best memories of your life: that milestone birthday party. Your first kiss. The day you got married or became a parent. You can remember those things like they happened this morning. So how do you make those kinds of impressions with your business?
The answer lies in the making of memories, or “Defining Moments,” as the authors call them. Those are moments that truly stick out, the lagniappes that make you rave about a hotel, the reasons you love your banker, why you shop where you shop. Many people think that those most memorable moments “just happen” but Heath and Heath say that manufactured ones are equally defining, as long as they have at least one of these four “elements”:
Pride occurs when we are “at our best.” It’s when you finally finish a 5K, after being a couch potato all your life. It’s when the CEO offers kudos. It’s when you finally land that difficult sale.
Connection is completely social. A wedding, a team breakthrough, a “work triumph,” friends-only weekend, or graduation. These things strengthen relationships “because we share them with others.”
Insight changes perception. It’s that moment when you know you’re going to quit your job, start a new business, or eliminate a nasty habit. Insight, as a defining moment, might be a “pit,” rather than a “peak” in emotion.
And finally, Elevation is when something is memorably delightful. A free coffee from a random barista, a rite of passage that’s unexpected, small lagniappes that don’t have to cost much but that delight employees as much as customers. “Break the script” to get to an elevation moment.
“Once you realize how important moments can be,” say the authors, “it’s easy to spot opportunities to shape them.”
So many competitors, so little time to best them all in your customers’ minds. How can your business do that in this ad-saturated season?
“The Power of Moments” tells you, but first, authors Chip Heath and Dan Heath will get you thinking about your own memorable moments in business, leisure, and socially. Remembering them — and reading the anecdotes that Heath and Heath hold up as example — leads to seeing why those events left an imprint in our minds and how they might be re-created with a business focus. Heath and Heath also include comprehensive wrap-ups at the end of each chapter, further step-by-step tales of problems solved, and plenty of cautions.
As it turns out, making an impact can backfire spectacularly.
And that, it seems, could lead to an impactful experience, couldn’t it? And another instance of definition? So then… just reading “The Power of Moments” could become a big event.
Terri Schlichenmeyer is the author of The Bookworm Sez, which is published in more than 200 newspapers and 50 magazines throughout the U.S. and Canada. Schlichenmeyer may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.