Book Review: Guy Kawasaki's Enchantment

Tuesday, March 08, 2011 3 Comments

A few weeks back, I got my hands on a copy of Guy Kawasaki's latest, Enchantment. While at first glance the title seemed like little more than an updated How to Win Friends and Influence People in the digital age, I quickly realized that this was not your average business title and could not put it down. I read it in a single night and have since recommended it to several contacts who could use a lesson in enchantment themselves.

The largest takeaway I got from the book was this: enchantment is voluntary. You either do it or you don't. The party you are trying to work your magic on either accepts it or they don't. If you're doing it right, everything sort of falls into place and people will desire your enchantment. If you're doing it wrong, you'll find yourself strong-arming people into liking you (or your product, or your work) and no one wins.

The official release:

Enchantment: The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds, and Actions is Guy’s tenth book. In it, he explains how to influence what people will do while maintaining the highest standards of ethics.

The book explains when and why enchantment is necessary and then the pillars of enchantment: likability, trustworthiness, and a great cause.

The next topics are launching, overcoming resistance, making enchantment endure, and using technology. There are even special chapters dedicated to enchanting your employees and your boss.

Finally, because there are times you may want to resist enchantment, there’s even a chapter about how to do this too.

My favorite was a lesson in profanity in Chapter 2, How to Achieve Likability. As many regular readers of Jr Deputy Accountant know, I favor stronger words when making a stronger point and have found that though this turns some people off, it allows me the most freedom in expressing my opinion. That's where Kawasaki suggests swearing only when the audience supports you. "Swearing seldom works if the audience isn't positively inclined to you and your message," he writes. "It usually backfires and makes a hostile audience even more hostile." Granted, the Fed might not appreciate my tendency towards F-bombs but my experience has been that my readers (the most important part of my equation) mostly find my tone refreshing and entertaining, which is always the goal.

Also, note the Fed who is scared to death of engaging in social media (well, most of the Fed... San Francisco Fed still gets props for doing it right, so right they even know what an MT is!), Kawasaki does a whole chapter on How to Use Push Technology or, in simpler terms, Enchanting with Internets. If anyone could use a lesson in enchanting, it's the Fed. "You will find that nothing enchants people on Twitter like an organization responding to tweets," he writes, almost as if he's staring right at the Fed. You listening yet? Don't worry, I don't expect you to @ me back with a response to that question, I'm used to the silence by now. Just think about it. Either use the tools or don't, it's all the same to me.

It's true. People are suckers for attention and engaging allows them that.

All in all, an excellent title for anyone looking to make the most of their influence in the most ethical way possible. You might not be the next Steve Jobs but being the best version of you goes a long way, be that on Twitter, in business or in your personal life.

You can order Enchantment here or directly from Amazon here.

Jr Deputy Accountant

Some say he’s half man half fish, others say he’s more of a seventy/thirty split. Either way he’s a fishy bastard.


Anonymous said...

Thank you very much for this review. I appreciate it very much!

Anonymous said...
Bob English said...

Bernank's hacked Facebook page: