Wednesday, May 18, 2011


On a playground, the way you swing higher and higher is to pump your legs in the same rhythm that the swing would swing if you pulled it back and let it go - the resonant frequency. The way you push down a small but formidable tree (I as did last week) is to push at the natural frequency that the tree naturally oscillates at (in that case about once per second back and forth, back and forth). Tiny.. small.. bigger.. bigger.. bigger.. BIGGER.. BIGGER.. down!

People jumping to music in bleachers or wind gusts hitting bridges are two other places where jumping or gusting just in the right regular tempo makes the movement grow bigger and bigger until it breaks.

A leader I worked with always talked about starting things at the right time of year - the time of year that makes sense to people. The more I think about it, that was a commitment to hitting the organization at it resonate frequency.

To move anything... a company, an organization, a family, an employee... push at the resonate frequency. As it naturally oscillates, push things at just the right time to make the oscillation bigger. Unveil exciting things at the annual conference. If your kids are especially receptive at bedtime, speak things that mold their character at bedtime -- not when they're cranky right after school. Your church operates on the school calendar... start new things at the semester breaks.

Move things at the regular frequency with which they want to be moved - the timing they "resonate" with. Any other timing than that has the feeling of being jerky and dampens the effect you are trying to achieve.

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