How Research-Driven Organizations Become Thought Leaders


Is James Clear Just Doing Marketing?

Summing up the much-higher-than-normal responses I got to my post yesterday on James Clear’s shift in email POV — roughly sifted, they fall into two buckets:

  1. “I hate what Clear has done to his emails and it’s bad marketing.”
  2. “I don’t like/am agnostic about what Clear’s done, but it’s a good marketing move for him to attract larger audiences.”

Philip Morgan, a colleague and mentor, asked rhetorically in a Slack conversation which of two options — stopping all emails for a time, or moving from “full fat” to “skim milk” emails, as Clear seems to have done — would be better for a) his authority as an expert and b) his business:

“Are the two (authority and business building) the same thing?” asked Philip.…

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James Clear and the Abrupt POV Shift

Most of us think of points-of-view as things we assume and then invite other people to share.

That’s limiting at best. POVs only have meaning and value as social agreements, as an important defining term in a relationship with someone else.…

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Arguments vs. Opinions

We all have opinions — an almost infinite number. Having opinions is an arguable definition of being alive.

The problem for research-driven organizations that want to create wide impact isn’t that their researchers lack opinions. The problem for research-driven organizations that want to create wide impact is that they’re probably not giving their researchers incentives and modeling for expressing those opinions publicly in persuasive ways.…

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POV: Your Persona, Your Stock-in-Trade

The usual chatter about POV among savvy consultants is…that you need one. By which they mean: a strong and distinctive opinion about something important to their clients’ businesses. (Consultants without strong opinions just fix your problem instead of giving you a strategy.…

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POV: The Four Axes

I see four POV axes for researchers who generate insight content for non-specialists:

  1. Are You From the Past or the Future?
  2. Are You an Advocate, or are You Dispassionate?
  3. Are You a Fox (always knitting together lots of disparate ideas) or a Hedgehog (jamming on one big idea)?
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POV: Who Are You to Us?

Why have so many residents in Detroit’s communities of color turned down the city’s offer to plant free trees in front of their homes?

Because no one asked them if they wanted the trees.

They should want them — at least, that’s how a researcher might think.…

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What’s Your POV?

We all have opinions — expressions of how we perceive the world. These we can be rather free with, especially at conferences around 5p.

Very few of us, by contrast, clearly articulate our points of view. The point of view — it says it right in the name — isn’t your opinion.…

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