Four Mindsets for Gaining Committed Action

By Andrew Bass | Newsletter

If only they loved it like you do...

I’ve recently spoken to a CFO who was bemoaning her team’s lack of enthusiasm for finance, an engineering firm MD who complained that his proud engineers weren’t interested in innovation, and a CEO who was scratching her head because when she called for new ideas all she received were suggestions about catering.

What these three positive, energetic and well-meaning leaders had all discovered was that however much they implored, praised, cajoled or exhorted people, they couldn't muster the kind of genuine commitment they really wanted. 

People were doing 'the day job' – but it felt like something was missing. These leaders felt like they had to inject all the energy. It was exhausting.

Imploring, cajoling, exhorting, even praising – none of these work as well as we hope. And if you push or pull people you can get their compliance but you will rarely get their commitment. Getting commitment requires a different mindset: the leader not as 'boss', but as educator.

Four Mindsets for creating Committed Action

  1. You can't motivate people – motivation is intrinsic. You have to have faith that the motivation is in there (95% of the time it is!) and then figure out how to release it.

  2. The meaning of your communication is the response that it gets. This mindset asks us to hold ourselves to a high standard as communicators. It says that if people are not committed, it's because our unintended message is, "This is not worth committing to" (it seems boring, unimportant, for the boss's benefit but not mine, and so on). The good news is that if we recognise that, and change the message, we can change the response.

  3. The best leaders are educators. I've worked with some superb leaders. They differ on many dimensions, but one thing they share is their enthusiasm for explaining, educating and generally 'joining the dots' for people. 

  4. Every job is interesting if you look at it right. Very few children say that when they grow up they want to be an agile project manager, a risk analyst, a salesperson or a finance director. Yet the best of all of these have become fascinated with their subjects, often because a leader got them excited about.

Henry Ford is supposed to have asked, " “Why is it when I hire a pair of hands, I get a human being as well?” Opinions differ about whether this was a complaint, or a leadership lesson about untapped potential. 

Hired hands aren't committed. The great thing about humans is that they can be if the leader does the work to explain and bring the business to life the right way.

What leaders say about Amazon #1 Hot New Release, Committed Action

“Leaders who want to inspire their people to take ownership will appreciate this enjoyable guide. Andy's idea of ‘the leader as educator’ is spot on in a world where organisations have to learn, and re-learn, faster than ever.”
Rooney Anand, Former CEO Greene King and Executive Chairman Redcat Pub Company

“If people only 'half understand', they can only 'half commit'. Andy's book teaches you to translate your leadership message from terms that make you want to act into terms that make them want to act.”
Jurga Žilinskienė MBE, Founder & CEO, Guildhawk

“We are in the business of helping our clients grow revenue, and we're very clear that means one thing: coordinated and committed action. Andy's book Committed Action will help you get your people on the same page so they take the actions you need to grow your business.”
Michael FitzGerald, Founder & CEO, OnePageCRM | |

Or read a sample chapter.

Copyright Andy Bass 2022

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