Monday, September 14, 2009

Selling an Idea

Sometime back in my career days, I was in a workshop and this example about selling an idea came up. The tale (back in the days of the Cold War) goes like this:

The Russians and the Americans met at a bargaining table. The Russians put their demands on the table, and the Americans became indignant saying, "No Way"... and walked out.

A year later they met again, and the Russians put the same demands on the table. The Americans refused them, and left.

Six months later, they met yet again. The Russians put the same demands on the table, and after some consultations, the Americans agreed to think about it.

The point? When we first hear something that seems unacceptable, we dismiss it. When we keep hearing it over and over, we become more used to the idea. Eventually we come to believe it.

Keep that thought in mind as you hear glowing reports on the news; carefully re-check the reality around you for comparison. Are houses selling in your neighborhood? Are folks finding jobs again? Are your banks lending?

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