Champfrogs Checklist

The Champfrogs Checklist: Acceptance

People like to enjoy the smell of success, hoping a little bit rubs off on them, so they feel accepted

As a creative networker, trying to change a little bit of the world, a great weapon you can use is the association principle. It says people are eager to associate themselves with the successes of others. When they feel connected with other people’s achievements, even if it’s in a superficial way, they think their public image is strengthened, and they feel more accepted by the group.

I attended a class reunion a year or two earlier and I was talking with one of the ladies, who had been a girl in my class more than 30 years ago. This was one of the most intelligent pupils at the time, and I’m sure she’s still quite bright. At the reunion she told me, “This is very silly. When I found out your book is on Amazon, I felt proud, because you were in my class long ago. Isn’t that stupid?” Me being Dutch I probably replied in an honest and fair manner, something like, “Yes, that’s ridiculous. I wrote the book, not you.”

The Smell of Success

That’s how people are. When their favorite team wins the season’s finale they celebrate, “We are the champions!” while we did nothing, except drinking a lot of beer and making a lot of noise. But when their team loses, most of the fans say “They lost,” not “We lost.” Even worse, supporters can give voice to pure brain-twisters such as “We could have won the championship, if they had not screwed up!”

As smart creative networkers we use this. When we want to convince people of the usefulness of our great ideas, we allow them to enjoy the smell of success, so they can hope a little bit rubs off on them, and feel accepted. That’s why we ask ourselves:

Where Is the Smell of Success?

Oh, by the way. Did you see I have 10K followers on Twitter? Care to associate yourself with me? 😉

Also read:

(image: Juhan Sonin)
Champfrogs ChecklistThis is part 3 of a 10-part series about the Champfrogs Checklist, a simple tool for change agents to match their ideas for change with people’s intrinsic motivation and desires. The full checklist consists of Curiosity, Honor, Acceptance, Mastery, Power, Freedom, Relatedness, Order, Goal, and Status. The Champfrogs Checklist article is available for download via the Management Workout mailing list.

  • The Champfrogs Checklist: Honor
  • The Champfrogs Checklist: Mastery
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  • Lucianadrian

    True that association with success is not lasting in hard times when things go not so nice, but still, smell of success will gather a group that in hard times might be larger than having no group at all.
    I remember reading somewhere that some people are motivated by appartenance to a group, and success could be the reason for them to want to belong to that group.
    I believe that once “smell of success” gets the group together in the first place, the creative networker should then invest in other group bonding elements, that would ensure that the group resists hard times. Am I wrong in this ?

  • Jurgen Appelo

    I think you have a good point there.

  • Andrefaria

    And every time you write a new article or post in your blog I feel very proud of myself too, just because and know you and because I’m part of the management 3.0 movement.
    I can’t help it. =)
    By the Way, Great Article, Jurgen.

  • Jurgen Appelo

    The association principle at work. Nice! Great to have you on board André!

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