Max's Bookshelf

There are two principles of self-development that come into play in Laughing to Leadership. First is the reality that people learn best when they actually experience something.

This is not a new belief. Over 2,300 years ago In The Nicomachean Ethics, Aristotle wrote, “For the things we have to learn before we can do them, we learn by doing them.”

His sentiments have been echoed over the centuries. In the 1990s, Dale Carnegie said, “Learning is an active process. We learn by doing. Only knowledge that is used sticks in your mind.”

In this new millennium Aristotle’s thought is still being reworded by some of the best known leaders of today. “You don't learn to walk by following rules. You learn by doing, and by falling over,” says Richard Branson, founder of Virgin Industries.

According to NTL Institute people retain 75% of the knowledge they receive when they practice by doing. Compare this to reading or hearing a lecture which will generate only a 10% or 5% retention respectively.

The second principle is that a picture is worth a thousand words. Although not as old as Aristotle’s wisdom, this concept was first offered in a 1911 newspaper article by newspaper editor Arthur Brisbane. Teaching about journalism and publicity he wrote, “Use a picture. It’s worth a thousand words.”

Think about seeing picture of The Grand Canyon. No matter how many words you used could you really ever adequately describe it to the point of impact from actually seeing it?

So this brings us to the use of cartoons to instill leadership techniques. The belief is based in the way cartoons are able to help us experience something through the way they use abstract images or concepts to relay their point. They provide a picture of a situation one can almost imagine being personally involved in.

But do not just look at the cartoon or the comment added underneath it.

Put it into action. The research earlier noted from NTL Institute did give an even greater way to retain new information: putting it into immediate practice or teach it to others. Both of these methods will allow 90% retention. Read these one at a time then put what you have seen into action. Your leadership skills will be enhanced.

© 2007 Max Impact Corporation, Rochester Hills, MI USA