I read a few days ago that Waterman and Moleskine are bringing out a pen which allows you to write on paper and record what you are writing on a tablet.

That is great news for me because I use a traditional paper diary with all its advantages (I remember more through the physical action of writing, crossing out is great…) and disadvantages (what happens if Iose it?, using a rubber can be messy…).

Unfortunately it could put paid to one of the best exercises I have in my Impact and Influence course. After the introduction to the course I take out my diary and my mobile. I ask: “What do you think about the fact I use a paper diary when I have an electronic diary in my mobile?”

The question gives rise to judgements and some participants say things like: “You’re a bit old-fashioned, aren’t you?” And I say “Sell me the change .. I stop using the paper diary and I use the electronic one in my mobile.”

The striking thing, and it almost always happens the same way, is that they start with the mobile (what they know, their reality): “You’re going to be able to do x.. y .. z.” And I answer: “So what? / I know that / I do live in the real world.” The frustration is almost palpable.

There is practically not one single question.

Even though it sounds obvious, to influence someone means giving yourself a good clean first, discovering the other person’s reality and adapting what you want to say to that reality.

(I am now going to have a think about how I can adapt the exercise.)

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