In keeping with the theme of sustainable leadership, this month’s book review covers a topic that is, in my mind, at the very root of successful leadership. We define Attitude as Habit of Thought and so this month’s book review tells us how habits work and, more importantly, how we can change our habits if need be. In “The Power of Habit”, Charles Duhigg, gives leaders some wonderful insights into why change is so difficult for many and how that can improve when we understand the power of habits.
My favorite part of the book is the discussion around how to change habits. We know that habits are formed through life as our brains process and compartmentalize the vast amount of information we consume every day. Those habits that no longer serve us well, unfortunately, cannot be erased.
However, we can change the behavior by exercising the Golden Rule of Habit Change. Habits use a cue, or trigger, to create a corresponding behavior and expecting a reward for the behavior. By changing the behavior around an existing cue and using a same or similar reward, leaders can change their own attitudes as well as the attitudes of the people in their organization. Culture can be changed one attitude at a time!