Intervention: Focused on 3 vital behaviors: 1) filter drinking water 2) don’t enter the drinking water with infected limbs 3) hold other members accountable to doing the first two behaviors.
Results: Reduced the number of Guinea worm cases from 3.5 million in 1986 to fewer than 10,000 by 2006. 11 of the 20 countries considered endemic in 1986 were certified as free of the Guinea worm disease as of 2007. Source
Challenge: Scientist collaboration
Research conducted at Bell Labs has shown that the single best predictor of two scientists collaborating with one another was actually the distance between their offices. Namely, scientists who worked next to each other were three times more likely to collaborate than those who worked 30 feet from each other. Similar results confirming the importance of proximity have been replicated in other studies. Source
Conclusion: The leprechaun is actually persuading not influencing. He's not after a win/win. To get your project done well requires your stakeholders. Influencing them to participate is a win/win. Here are some additional tips to help you grow your influencing muscle:
- Most change efforts fail because we have unrealistic expectations and we look to one simple solution.
- Do not assume people do things for only one reason. Figure out what's in it for them.
- Profound, persistent, and resistant problems last because we look for one simple solution. There’s rarely one cause. You can influence persistent and resistant behaviors when you know the forces driving it.
- Crucial moments tell you when it’s time to act. Timing is an important influence for project managers to engage stakeholders.
- Study positive deviance. Study those who succeed where most others fail. Find the exceptions. For example, there might be people right around you that stand out. You can ask your network, “who succeeds despite the odds?” and “what do they do differently?” Then do that on your project.
- Answer this question thinking of each stakeholder's perspective: “Is it worth it?” and “Can I do it?”
- Diagnose why change seems impossible. Your world is perfectly organized to create the behavior you’re currently experiencing. When change seems impossible, use the six sources of influence to find the conspiracy of causes. Source