Customer Reviews: Enchantment: The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds, and Actions
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Showing 1-10 of 49 reviews(4 star). Show all reviews
on March 8, 2011
Marketing and leadership books are strange animals. Some are great and others make you want to stab yourself in the eye with a fork. Almost all, though, usually fall into one of two categories:

1. How to develop a large and successful business; and
2. Why all marketers are liars

Enchantment by Guy Kawasaki is neither of these; instead, it's a book about one thing:


"How can I influence others without moral compromise?" is the question at the heart of Enchantment. And it's an important one. There are a number of easy cheats to convince people to follow your leadership (carrots and sticks) or to buy your product or join your cause (incentives), but eventually those things always fail.

Why? Because they're disingenuous. They don't tap into people's passions. They don't move the heart.

And without that happening, whatever impact you have is fleeting at best.

The "pillars of enchantment" Kawasaki puts forward ones you'd be hard pressed to disagree with:

1. Be likeable
2. Be trustworthy
3. Have a great cause

In other words, be someone you'd actually want to spend time with and offer something that matters. These seem like concepts that should be met with a resounding, "well, I should hope so." I mean, this seems to be common sense, doesn't it? That's thing about common sense, though. To paraphrase G.K. Chesterton, it's not that common sense has been tried and found lacking, it's that it's been found difficult and left untried.

Unless you're likeable, it's extremely difficult to be found trustworthy. And unless you're trustworthy, no one will rally around your cause, no matter how good it is.

Whether you're in the for-profit or non-profit world, whether you're in some form of vocational ministry or working for a huge conglomerate, who you are impacts everything you're involved with. Our character can be the scent of life or the stench of death, and we would all do well to remember that.

The rest of the book tackles the implications of being enchanting, from launching your cause, overcoming resistance, using technology, how it plays out with employees and employers, how to make enchantment endure--and even how to resist it.

A key principle that resonated with me is that of endurance. Even if you have the greatest cause, it's essential to remember that "enchantment is a process, not an event." You're working to build a relationship, not just get a sale or get someone to do something for you. And relationships take effort. This is something that is not easy for many in marketing and even in leadership positions to remember. The truth is, though, for many of us, it's easier to try to squeeze whatever we can out of our market today, and not think about the long-term consequences (like having no market in the future).

This is where social media comes in handy, especially Facebook and Twitter (two resources that Kawasaki highly recommends). These two tools allow organizations and individuals to connect in ways that previously weren't possible. And used well, they can allow you to truly enchant your customer or supporter base by engaging on their terms. Dell, among other organizations, fields support questions via Twitter (I know because an associate contacted me once after I complained about my previous laptop). This gives people a great experience with the company, even if they don't like the product.

One of the challenges with social media, though, is finding the right mix of promotion vs. conversation. Kawasaki suggests that if around 5% of your content is promotional, you should be in good shape, but he's also quick to point out that if people aren't complaining, you're probably not promoting enough (p. 115).

(Does this mean my Twitter followers will be seeing a shift in my updates? Probably, and hopefully for the better.)

Principles aside, the thing that caught my attention about this book is that it brought to mind people I know who are naturally good at this. They just seem to "get" that this is the kind of person you need to be in order to be successful. Take some time and look around your office, your school or whatever context you spend most of your day in, and I suspect you'll see at least one or two people who are naturally "enchanting" as well.

So here's the big question: Will this book help you to be "enchanting" in your sphere of influence?

Possibly. This isn't a book that guarantees that if you follow these 8 easy steps, you'll have more friends, better posture and piles of candy. What it does remind readers, though, is that the only way to really make a lasting impact on people is to act with integrity. That's a big deal and advice we would all do well to heed.

If you have a chance, do pick up a copy of Enchantment. It's definitely a worthwhile investment and just might challenge you in a few places where you won't expect it.
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on September 1, 2012
This will be a short review, for I am a man of few words.

I'm in sales as a territory manager in the Carolinas for a manufacturer in the natural products industry. From reading this book, I was able to glean principles to apply in my day to day business with accounts; even though I think this book is geared more toward entrepreneurs.

I read a review where someone said this book was too simple. Exactly! I think the book was suppose to be simple. Just as doing business with anyone today should be made simple. This is one of the points I take from 'Enchantment', how to simplify business with the accounts and consumers I come into contact with.

The "How To Achieve Likeability" and "How To Achieve Trustworthiness" are two factors that play a big role in what I do in sales. So the bottom line for me here is, it's about building and maintaining the relationship. This makes doing business easier in the long run.

The company I work for gives their territory managers multi-paged pitch books to use in selling promotions to accounts. I dislike using them. Too many pages. Guy's 10-20-30 rule is what I now follow. I tweak my Keynote presentations to make them short and sweet. All the other information from the pitch-books I learn and can relay without a slide.
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on March 28, 2016
This was a very interesting book. The author takes the reader on a view of situations and relationships and how to bring change into other people. This is a great read to understand the meaning of enchantment and how it is applied in the quality fields of production and service in an organization. This book definitely leads the reader to that level of understanding.
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on January 1, 2012
In the beginning of the book I almost put it down to never finish it. It starts out with the very basics that someone leaving college and going to their first job interview needs to learn. However, as the book progressed, there are some good fundamentals of persuasion that are mostly highlights from some of the popular books with Guy's own twist to it. If you're well read in marketing, sales, and persuasion, you won't get much new from this book, but there are enough little tidbits to certainly make it worth your small investment of time and money. Not the first book I'd pick, but should be on your list to read.
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on February 11, 2014
After reading this book, I decided to start a new tradition - my Christmas gift to my direct reports each year would be a book, so for 2013, this is what they each received. And in the following weeks, conversations with them showed me that they were reading, processing and working to apply what they had read. We're all a bunch of technical introverts, so this book was really helpful at challenging us to get out of our shells and to be cognizant of important topics like being in control of your own branding/marketing.
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on March 9, 2011
Guy Kawasaki's Enchantment is like an updated version of Dale Carnegie's How to Win Friends and Influence People. In less than 12 Chapters and 200 pages, you will learn how to make your customers fall in love with you.

If you don't have a lot of time to read the latest business books, Enchantment will be a great turbo lesson in persuasion, how people choose, social media and marketing. Kawasaki's bibliography includes 20 of the most popular and authoritative books on the subject. I'd read about half of the books in the bibliography and found that Kawasaki did a great job of integrating the information in a usable, practical and easy to understand format.

In addition to practical how-to advice and examples there are also sidebars and callouts that contain personal stories from everyday people who responded to a request that Guy made for people to provide their own personal examples of enchantment.

If you're already a fan of Guy Kawasaki's you won't be surprised to see that there are all kinds of pictures that he included throughout the book. Many of them look like they come from his own camera of iPhone.
Everything about the book speaks to enchantment as it can occur if we would only let it. Instead of some overly designed web site, you can experience the book Enchantment via it's Facebook Fan Page. It's an extension of the book where readers, reviewers and fans post pictures, examples and stories. So while you can read the book, you can experience the daily evolution of its principles in practice.

My favorite chapter is actually "How to Use Pull Technology". In it, you will find a super easy and practical primer on how to integrate all the social media tools that you have into a cohesive purpose and campaign.
This is really a great book if you're looking for a summary and an integration of a lot of more intense and academic books. I'd recommend it to any business owner, sales and marketing person or Guy Kawasaki fan.
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on June 2, 2011
What this reviewer got out of Guy Kawasaki's "Enchantment: The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds, and Actions" was an unmistakable sense of deja vu -- I've read this before, and it was by a guy named Dr. Robert Cialdini. To the prolific Kawasaki's credit, he gives due credit to inspirations such as Cialdini and "Made to Stick" authors Chip Heath and Dan Heath.

Fans of this genre, and perhaps anyone who's only read Dale Carnegie's How to Win Friends and Influence People, may wonder what the big deal is with this book, besides the fact it was written by Guy Kawasaki (his name even gets more prominent billing than the title).

I'd answer that it benefits from Kawasaki's positioning as a technology expert, author, and venture capitalist. Many of the technologies that a person can use to vastly magnify his or her influence weren't even around when the other authors' books were written. Kawasaki, on the other hand, lives and breathes social media/Web 2.0, and therefore provides a helpful modern twist -- especially if books on influence and persuasion typically "aren't your thing."

So, should you get it? Watch the video and decide for yourself!
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I've read many, many business / leadership books over the years and something you come to expect is that the basic message is going to be the same in most cases. Aim to create a good first impression. Care about what the person you're talking to wants out of life. Be clear and understandable. Do something with your time that you honestly care about. It's hard to knock a new book for providing the same information again - after all, these basics haven't changed. What's important is how clearly this current book presents the information to a new audience of readers. I feel Guy Kawasaki does a reasonably good job with Enchantment.

Yes, it can seem sometimes that the items are common sense. Aim to change hostility into civility. Create a positive impression with short, simple, meaningful messages. Be patient with people - they may be dealing with an autistic child or an abusive spouse. Yes, we can say these are common sense - but how many times have we seen people be irritable or lack patience in situations where they could have done better? I think all of us could use to perfect our ability to take in a deep breath and deal with a "troublesome" person in a more serene manner.

I wish Kawasaki had come up with fresh examples. I literally had read about both his "hospital checklist saves lives" and his "Vietnamese mothers find ways to beat malnutrition" examples in the previous management book I read the day before. If he had chosen examples from his own past then they would have been fresh and interesting. Similarly. I'd read about the "offering few jam options encourages people to choose one, offering too many options overloads peoples' brains and they don't buy any at all" experiment more times than I can count.

Kawasaki offers commonly repeated advice. When meeting someone, look for any common interests you might share, even if it's a common dislike of a topic. Respect people, offer thanks, provide value, accept diversity, don't tolerate abusive / hostile behavior, and disclose any conflicts. This last one is curious though. I believe strongly that a person SHOULD disclose any conflicts they might have, including stating when a review copy is received for free. (Disclaimer - I paid for this book with my own money!) But even while Kawasaki promotes this, he uses as one of his examples in his book that a reviewer got upset when prodded that he should have disclosed that he got a rare gadget he was reviewing for free. Kawasaki supports him! This even though the FTC requires web reviews to state how a review item was acquired. The discrepancy bothered me.

Kawasaki offers interesting ideas. Money rewards can be harmful to behavior - it reduces how helpful people are to others in a direct connection. Employees tend to want mastery, autonomy, and purpose. It's not just money that motivates them. He recommends keeping a journal about your experiences to learn from both the successful results and the hurdles. He points out that the number of searches on YouTube are second only to Google, so it's good to create videos! He recommends we investigate our competition, to determine what both you and they do, what they do better, and what you do better. You need that basic understanding in order to improve.

All fair enough advice, and while it's been said many times before, he does have a style in his delivery that many will find easy to understand. However, I can't give this five stars for the reasons mentioned above plus a few more troubling ones.

First, he presents a checklist for bosses to print and use - and it's chock full of negative words about the boss. I would hope someone so well read on motivation and encouragement would avoid this type of a negative-word-laden list. That's not how to encourage anybody.

He mentions several times how an iPod should, instead of saying "80 gig iPod", should say "Holds xxxxxx songs". But how could that possibly be calculated? Songs are wildly different lengths and sizes depending on a wide range of factors. That's like saying on a crayon, "This crayon can draw an 8" pumpkin". Sure, but how about all the other things it could do? I disagree with this idea wholeheartedly.

Finally, and this one bothers me on a very visceral level, he's talking about how he adores his daughter and how he loves to take her out for candy as a special treat. That part alone bugged me a lot, that he's training her to equate candy with affection and he can't take her out for something healthy instead. But he goes on to say as his ultimate praise - and I quote - "I'll never deny her if she GIVES me grandchildren." WHAT??? He's already putting pressure on his daughter to kick out grandchildren for him? What if she's infertile? What if she simply chooses not to have children? I'm a mother myself, so this isn't me extrapolating my own life onto her. This is me saying that, for a guy who claims to support women's rights several times in his book, that he's already deciding that his daughter must GIVE him grandchildren to be his ultimate achievement. If she's president of the US, or a Nobel prize winner, or anything else, it won't matter. She has to kick out some kids. I feel she should be able to do whatever SHE wants to do and he should be proud of whatever route she takes, whatever path she takes to get there. His love should not be contingent on her producing babies for him to play with.

So again, to summarize - nothing new. It's all been said before, and his examples are occasionally quite old and tired. However, for a group of people who haven't read these messages before, they are presented fairly cleanly, and the messages do need to be heard. So for people who might not have read the many previous books that covered this ground, this is a fresh new approach. It just needs some polishing - in my opinion - to be a five star book.

Note - I paid for this book with my own funds, from a bookstore. I admit that I initially picked it up because I love origami and I liked the cover :)
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on April 8, 2011
Guy Kawasaki is one smart cookie. Don't believe us? Just ask him.

Kawasaki's book, "The Art of the Start," literally became the bible of startup entrepreneurs looking for buy-in along Silicon Valley's Sand Hill Road VC set, while catapulting Kawasaki to essential speaker status at many of the Bay Area's high-tech conferences of the last half decade.

In this, his tenth book, the author, speaker and former evangelist for Apple computer, takes us on a journey to "Enchantment"; that special quality that takes companies from necessary to can't live without status. Steve Jobs' company is, of course, at the top of the enchantment list, but others like internet shoe emporium Zappos and even Queen Latifah qualify, too.

Along the way, Kawasaki points out rules, guideposts, axioms and techniques all designed to help your company increase its engagement, reputation and success in being the top-of-mind, go-to company in its unique product or marketing space. "Enchantment" quickly covers a wide array of methods to help insure success; from how to dress, to Tweeting parameters (tweet often, repeat your tweets, did I tell you I run Alltop?) to learning how to present (shorten, rehearse, repeat). Most of Kawasaki's techniques make perfect sense and he sometimes takes both sides of the argument to show just how rules have exceptions to themselves as well.

The problem may just be Kawasaki himself. At times, it seems like the author is just trying too hard to cement his reputation as a "high-tech guru." He continues to use his trademarked phrases from previous efforts ("bull shiitake," "10-20-30') as gives us "Guy's rules" for nearly everything. Unlike contemporaries such as Seth Godin or David Meerman Scott, Kawasaki seems unable to proffer advice without a heavy dose of self-promotion (Did I tell you I met Richard Branson?)

If there is one lesson that the author dispenses that would also serve him well, it might just be humility. If you can get past that, this is otherwise a good book.
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on April 14, 2011
I'm very good at not disappointing myself when I pick magazines, books, or movies. Surely, I didn't disappoint myself with this one. Just like in my case, the knowledge is there, the zeal is there, but something seems not to be clicking. So after doing my homeworks, I picked this book. What an awesome book.
It takes you through things you might probably know of but have not been applying correctly or taking full advantage of. It's an eye opener. Infact, I am getting a website, redoing my facebook, and twitter and gearing up towards taking on my world. This book gets you ready to push yourself and your ideas to success. Sometimes, things aren't working because of how we see and do things. He teaches you how to spruce up yourself, spice up a little, and do things the correct way. And for those of you who like to do things right, you'll be endorsed to live a lifestyle of love.
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