The Power of Moments Book Review

Originally, my review of Chip and Dan Heath’s newest book, The Power of Moments, was going to highlight the merits of the framework they present for creating moments that serve as catalysts for growth and transformation. Yet, after some additional contemplation, I realized that reducing my review of the book to a recap with positive spin would be a disservice to the Heath brothers’ work. You see this book, which comes out in October 2017, is more than a framework for better organizational leadership. It’s really a manifesto for recovering deep human connection that seemingly loses ground daily to the increasing digitization of world.

Chip & Dan Heath's new book The Power of Moments coverAs is the case with the Heath brothers’ other books, Switch, Made to Stick and Decisive, The Power of Moments contains dozens of real stories about people and organizations who’ve experienced profound transformation. These stories run the gamut daily living: a healthcare system in San Diego overhauling its employee experience to better serve its patients. An independent hotel in Los Angeles beating out 5 star chains like the Four Seasons by providing delightfully quirky customer service. Or extremely well planned sit-ins in 1960s Nashville to overcome segregation in public places. Each of these stories and more like them speak to ways of creating defining moments that have lasting impact.

The common thread that these stories share is that they had elements of elevation, pride, insight and connection that were intentionally concocted to drive poignant moments.

  1. Elevation in the sense of joy, amazement, and sensory appeal was incorporated into the moment.
  2. Pride in the sense that courage and recognition drove a belief in the significance of the moment.
  3. Insight in the sense that there were realizations, positive or negative, that created the motivation and desire to leap forward or progress.
  4. Connection in the sense that human bonds were formed or strengthened in the moment and shared memories were created.

The last element, connection is by far the most important. Powerful moments rarely happen to someone who is alone. People experience epiphanies all of the time, but they often involve interpersonal interaction. What Chip and Dan Heath deliberately illustrate with their book is that we can (and need to) all get back to building better relationships with one another. In this case, it’s through the construction of powerful moments. The Power of Moments shows that when we exit the silos of isolation today’s world makes easier to embrace, profound things happen.

I don’t have anything bad to say about this book. It’s because the Heath brothers did such a fascinating job of encouraging deeper human connections. While one might say that no one should have to be told that deepening relationships is important, it doesn’t hurt to provide a framework in a world that seems to be struggling with relationship building more than ever. If a framework for doing that would benefit you or someone you know, I’d highly recommend getting yourself a copy of The Power of Moments this fall.

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