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Senior Correspondent

All leaders move people. Moving people begins when you understand them, not when they understand you.

Daniel Pink believes the ability to move people begins with attunement.

“Attunement is the ability to bring ones actions and outlook into harmony with other people and with the context you’re in. Think of it as operating the dial on a radio. It’s the capacity to move up and down the band as circumstances demand, locking in on what’s being transmitted, even if those signals aren't immediately clear or obvious.” Daniel Pink, To Sell is Human: The Surprising Truth about Moving Others.

Pink defines attunement as, “perspective-taking.”

Moving others begins with taking their perspective not pushing yours.

Tune into another’s perspective, but how?

Three ways to find attunement:

  1. Pink writes, “Assume that you’re not in power.” Pink’s comment is based on research by Galinsky, Magee, and Gruenfeld, Power and Perspectives Not Taken.
  2. “Use your head as much as your heart.” Empathy is useful, but thinking about what others are thinking enhance your ability to move them.
  3. Mirror. Research demonstrates that mimicking makes people feel you’re attuned. Pink explains it can be as simple as repeating what others say word for word rather than paraphrasing.

More on power:

The more power we believe we have the less able we are to understand and appreciate others and their perspectives.

Those in charge are likely out of touch because they are in charge.

“Start each encounter with the assumption that you’re in the position of lower power.” Daniel Pink.

Powerful leaders don’t rely on power.

Still more:

Pink explains the ability to move others isn't becoming a pushover. Loosing yourself to others isn't leadership its oblivion. Read, To Sell is Human, for the rest of the story.

How might power be a barrier to moving others?

How might power limit one’s ability to take another’s perspective?

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