Thursday, October 15, 2009


Think of how frequently your life has been affected by nudging.
  • The teacher who nudged you to consider a different perspective.
  • The parents who nudged you to say "Please" and "Thank you."
  • The boss who, rather than tearing your work apart, quietly showed how it could be improved.

Bold gestures and words have their moments, but the nudges of life are more powerful, possibly because they are often not recognized and are barely felt.

How do you lead? You nudge.


John said...

The most important nudge I ever got was from an Army doctor. I was preparing for civilian life after serving two years active duty and contemplating how I would make a living. Trained OJT as an x-ray tech, I was considering pursuing that line of work. The Captain said to me "You have too much on the ball for that. You can do better."

His words (plus the GI bill) inspired me to finish college, leading to a much more secure and satisfying life than I would have had otherwise.

Michael Wade said...


That is what is known as a very positive nudge.

Every time I hear a story like that, I wonder if the speakers had any idea of how important their words would be.

Wally Bock said...

Yes! I studied great supervisors for years. They were masters of the nudge. If you're around often and you have conversations with your people, you notice when things are just a bit wrong. You don't have to do anything dramatic to improve things. You do not need grand pronouncements. You just nudge. This kind of quiet but effective leadership rarely gets notices, but produces stellar results.