Charles Schwab had a mill manager whose peopleweren’t producing their quota of work.
“How is it,” Schwab asked him, “that a manager ascapable as you can’t make this mill turn out what itshould?”
"I don’t know,” the manager replied. “I’ve coaxed themen, I’ve pushed them, I’ve sworn and cussed, I’vethreatened them with damnation and being fired. Butnothing works. They just won’t produce.”
This conversation took place at the end of the day, justbefore the night shift came on. Schwab asked the managerfor a piece of chalk, then, turning to the nearestman, asked: “How many heats did your shift maketoday?”
Without another word, Schwab chalked a big figuresix on the floor, and walked away.
When the night shift came in, they saw the “6” andasked what it meant.
“The big boss was in here today,” the day people said.“He asked us how many heats we made, and we toldhim six. He chalked it down on the floor.”
The next morning Schwab walked through the millagain. The night shift had rubbed out “6” and replacedit with a big “7.”
When the day shift reported for work the next morning,they saw a big “7” chalked on the floor. So the nightshift thought they were better than the day shift didthey? Well, they would show the night shift a thing ortwo. The crew pitched in with enthusiasm, and whenthey quit that night, they left behind them an enormous,swaggering "10." Things were stepping up.
Shortly this mill, which had been lagging way behindin production, was turning out more work than any othermill in the plant.
Let Charles Schwab say it in his own words: “Theway to get things done,” say Schwab, “is to stimulatecompetition. I do not mean in a sordid, money-gettingway, but in the desire to excel.”
The desire to excel! The challenge! Throwing downthe gauntlet! An infallible way of appealing to people ofspirit.
Without a challenge, Theodore Roosevelt would neverhave been President of the United States. The RoughRider, just back from Cuba, was picked for governor ofNew York State. The opposition discovered he was nolonger a legal resident of the state, and Roosevelt,frightened, wished to withdraw. Then Thomas CollierPlatt, then U.S. Senator from New York, threw down thechallenge. Turning suddenly on Theodore Roosevelt, hecried in a ringing voice: “Is the hero of San Juan Hill acoward?”
Roosevelt stayed in the fight - and the rest is history.A challenge not only changed his life; it had a real effectupon the future of his nation.
“All men have fears, but the brave put down theirfears and go forward, sometimes to death, but always tovictory” was the motto of the King’s Guard in ancientGreece. What greater challenge can be offered than theopportunity to overcome those fears?
When Al Smith was governor of New York, he was upagainst it. Sing Sing, at the time the most notorious pen-itentiary west of Devil's Island, was without a warden.Scandals had been sweeping through the pristin walls,scandals and ugly rumors. Smith needed a strong man torule Sing Sing - an iron man. But who? He sent forLewis E. Lawes of New Hampton.
“How about going up to take charge of Sing Sing?” hesaid jovially when Lawes stood before him. “They needa man up there with experience.”
Lawes was flabbergasted. He knew the dangers ofSing Sing. It was a political appointment, subject to thevagaries of political whims. Wardens had come and gone- one had lasted only three weeks. He had a career toconsider. Was it worth the risk?
Then Smith, who saw his hesitation, leaned back inhis chair and smiled. “Young fellow,” he said, “I don’tblame you for being scared. It’s a tough spot. It’ll take abig person to go up there and stay.”
So Smith was throwing down a challenge, was he?Lawes liked the idea of attempting a job that called forsomeone “big.”
So he went. And he stayed. He stayed, to become themost famous warden of his time. His book 20,000 Yearsin Sing Sing sold into the hundred of thousands of copies.His broadcasts on the air and his stories of prisonlife have inspired dozens of movies. His “humanizing”of criminals wrought miracles in the way of prison reform.
“I have never found,” said Harvey S. Firestone,founder of the great Firestone Tire and Rubber Company,“that pay and pay alone would either bring togetheror hold good people. I think it was the gameitself.”
Frederic Herzberg, one of the great behavorial scientists,concurred. He studied in depth the work attitudesof thousands of people ranging from factory workers tosenior executives. What do you think he found to be themost motivating factor - the one facet of the jobs thatwas most stimulating? Money? Good working conditions?Fringe benefits? No - not any of those. The onemajor factor that motivated people was the work itself. Ifthe work was exciting and interesting, the worker lookedforward to doing it and was motivated to do a good job.
That is what every successful person loves: the game.The chance for self-expression. The chance to prove hisor her worth, to excel, to win. That is what makes foot-racesand hog-calling and pie-eating contests. The desireto excel. The desire for a feeling of importance.
PRINCIPLE 12 Throw down a challenge.
WIN PEOPLE TO YOUR WAY OF THINKING
PRINCIPLE 1The only way to get the best of an argument is to avoid it.
PRINCIPLE 2Show respect for the other person’s opinions. Neversay,“You’re wrong.”
PRINCIPLE 3If you are wrong, admit it quickly and emphatically.
PRINCIPLE 4Begin in a friendly way.
PRINCIPLE 5Get the other person saying “yes, yes” immediately.
PRINCIPLE 6Let the other person do a great deal of the talking.
PRINCIPLE 7Let the other person feel that the idea is his or hers.
PRINCIPLE 8Try honestly to see things from the other person’spoint ofview.
PRINCIPLE 9Be sympathetic with the other person’s ideas anddesires.
PRINCIPLE 10Appeal to the nobler motives.
PRINCIPLE 11Dramatize your ideas.
PRINCIPLE 12Throw down a challenge.
I often went fishing up in Maine during the summer.Personally I am very fond of strawberries and cream, butI have found that for some strange reason, fish preferworms. So when I we
Psychologists know you have to be careful when you go poking around the human mind because you're never sure what you'll find there. A number of psychological experiments over the