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"A Call to Action, Not a Sole Discussion of Theories and Statistics" 'Switch' by Chip and Dan Heath - A Book Review

Transformative Read!

Switch discusses the factors that motivate people to make change. It also notes how a leader's change in behavior can ignite motivation in an entire team. It provides practical and diverse scenarios in which change is necessary. The book addresses long-term relationships, self-esteem, and health. Each example showed that knowledge of a problem is not enough to spark change. The couples knew their relationships were not working, but they did not know how to fix it. The child knew he was unhappy with his school life, but he did not know how to turn his reputation around. The mothers were aware of their kid's poor health, but had limited food options. These proven methods are pivotal in making change.

The two factors that direct our motivation are the Rational side and the Emotional side. The Rational side holds the nickname "The Rider." The Emotional side holds the nickname "The Elephant." The Rider is prone to overthinking and rationalizes the elephant's unproductive behavior. The Rider requires clear directions to lead the emotional side. The Elephant plays into our immediate emotions. If the Rider cannot control the Elephant, change will not occur. You have to focus on what works, give clear instructions, and provide an end goal.

Most leaders have many followers. Without knowing what motivates your followers, interest will disappear. It all loops back around to the Elephant and the Rider. I have experience with a boss who became jaded and oblivious to employee's wants and needs. If he had read this book and applied the lessons, the employees would have thrived. This book is beyond helpful, no matter what you are doing in life. You do not need to be in a position of power to make change happen. Switch provides cohesive points that anyone can replicate to spark change. These steps can even help in our personal lives, with losing weight, or making better grades. Whatever the goal is, it is achievable with the right knowledge. There is a quote from the book that sums up a method that I found to be the most useful in my own life. The quote is “What works and how can we replicate it?” (Heath, 2010). Our surroundings offer answers that our mind may not. Looking outward opens up a whole other world of possibility to people as leaders. This quote offers a great illustration of leadership. It is easy to find examples of success from people in similar situations because of the Internet.

Social change has caused the enactment of several controversial laws in our culture. These methods would be useful to those who want to change the way things are in the world. Protests and riots show that the people are passionate about many social issues. Millennials as a whole value ethics when they shop. Several clothing stores altered clothes production to appeal to their target market. Change is happening everywhere. Those that resist change will pay a price larger than the price of change. People without assigned power are enacting change in large corporations via social media. Laws are being passed (good and bad) in reaction to the issues they want addressed. The changes have raised a lot of controversy between and within generations. Regardless of affiliation or ideals, it’s reasonable to say that the best time for change is now. That is, whenever "now" may be.

To conclude, I loved reading Switch. It is a call to action, not a sole discussion of theories and statistics. The book still remains relevant despite its age. It will continue to be applicable in all leadership situations for years to come. Reading this book taught me that anyone can make a change in a large way. Power comes from your drive and direction. Power is not earned from a nameplate or the number of years you've spent. There is a method to change and it is not always a daunting task that's out of reach. We all have the power to make a change. I recommend this book to high school and college students, as well as people already in the workforce. Change can be small, starting from within your mind, and expanding from there. These methods work wonders for that as well!

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"A Call to Action, Not a Sole Discussion of Theories and Statistics" 'Switch' by Chip and Dan Heath - A Book Review
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