The Power of Moments: Why certain experiences have extraordinary impact

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The Power of Moments: Why certain experiences have extraordinary impact

 “Defining moments shape our lives, but we don’t have to wait for them to happen. We can be the authors of them.Chip & Dan Heath


What if we could create our own extraordinary memories?


We all remember critical moments in our lives, when we realised which career we wanted (or didn’t want), when we found our life partner, or when we bought our first home. Many of these moments happen spontaneously, but the New York Times best-selling author brothers, Chip and Dan Heath, argue that we can exploit and create moments as memorable as these. And if we do, we can build extraordinary loyalty among customers and staff, and gain much more from our work and personal lives.

The designer of an advanced MRI machine for General Electric was delighted with his new model, until he saw the terrified children approaching the claustrophobic machine and realised that he had to make them want to have a scan. With the hospital, he made the whole room a fun experience, with children happily being photographed in the appliances modelled on pirate ships or space engines. The realisation that it was the experience of the MRI scan that was more important than the machine technology has cut the number of children who need sedation from 80% to 27% and allows the hospital to carry out many more scans in a day than before.

The brothers define moments as ones that are both meaningful and memorable and map out a system for introducing them to organisations:

Working out how to develop or magnify important moments like an employee’s first day at work may seem cheesy to some, but wouldn’t we all love to have experiences that stand out from the mundane? Those really special moments that get us telling others about them and that generate the sort of loyalty that money just can’t buy.

About the authors

Chip Heath is a professor at Stanford Graduate School of Business. He is the New York Times best-selling co-author (along with his brother, Dan) of three books including Switch: How to Change Things When Change is Hard. Their books have been translated into over 30 languages including Thai, Arabic, and Lithuanian. Chip has consulted with clients ranging from Google and Gap to the American Heart Association.

Dan Heath is a Senior Fellow at Duke University’s CASE centre, which supports social entrepreneurs. At CASE, he founded the Change Academy, a programme designed to boost the impact of social sector leaders. As co-author, Dan and Chip’s books have topped the bestseller lists and Made to Stick was named Best Business Book of the Year. Previously, Dan gained an MBA from Harvard Business School and worked as a researcher and case writer for them. He has a BA from the Plan II Honors Program from the University of Texas.

The brothers’ website includes a number of resources for the Power of Moments including podcasts and a video which you can access after registering.



“The most interesting, immediately actionable book I’ve read in quite a while. I walked away with new ideas for motivating employees, delighting customers, engaging students, and even planning family vacations.” Adam Grant, New York Times bestselling author

“Chip and Dan are amazing and impactful story tellers. In The Power of Moments they are able to use stories to display a powerful truth, that we can be more impactful as leaders and as people by recognising and creating more ‘moments’. At Virgin Atlantic, helping our people create such amazing moments for each other and for our customers is a nice new way of articulating an underlying goal of great leadership. This book truly frames that thinking in an easy to understand and engaging way. Perhaps even more importantly, I can see many similar opportunities in my life as a husband, father and member of a community.” Craig Kreeger, CEO, Virgin Atlantic


Book Details

Author: Chip Heath & Dan Heath

ISBN: 978-0593079263