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The Power of Moments


The Power of Moments


Do you remember your 11th grade Sheet Metal teacher, Mr. Goldman? He was the most influential teacher you ever had. He pulled the curtains back and revealed a world rich in working with your hands. It was Junior year that Mr. Goldman acknowledged your project and said, “Robert, you have the talent to become a master sheet metal tradesman. You need to read, study, practice, and keep on creating. One day, I’ll be reading about you in the papers.”

Whether it’s in English class, Physics, or Shop, everyone has had a teacher who was instrumental in their life’s defining moments.

In Chip and Dan Heath’s book, The Power of Moments: Certain Experiences Have Extraordinary Impact, we learn when looking back on defining moments, many of them happen serendipitously. The Heath brothers mention in their book while that might be true, it’s also possible to lay the groundwork for defining moments and to engineer them.

In the book, we also learn:


  • Everyone has defining moments in their life;
  • Defining moments are meaningful experiences that stand out in someone’s memory;
  • How to recognize defining moments;
  • And how to create defining moments.


A defining moment could be explained as a short experience that is both memorable and meaningful. The term “short” is relative and varies from person to person.

Looking back on moments, we have a tendency to minimize or ignore the length of the experience. Instead, there is an emphasis on an experience’s best or worst moment, known to psychologists as the peak-end rule.

In research, the Heath brothers discovered that defining moments are created from one or more of these elements:

Elevation - Defining moments that transcend status-quo experiences. They are delightful and extraordinary.

Insight - Defining moments change the way we see ourselves and the world. Truths walk out from the fog of our past 

Pride - Defining moments are important achievements and moments of courage.

Connection - Defining moments are social - they do not occur in isolation. They take place in the company of others.


Chip and Dan devote four sections of their book breaking down these elements. With meticulous research and superior storytelling skills, these brothers make sure readers will walk away from this book wondering about real world application from a lack of example.

Recently, author Dan Pink began to break down books by the following questions. Here is how I answer Pink’s questions for The Power of Moments.


What’s the book’s big idea? Everyone has defining moments in life. And it’s not necessary to wait for those to occur. Every person has the ability to engineer them.

Why should I care? Defining moments shape your life and the lives around you. By thoroughly understanding this, it’s easier to comprehend your past and build toward a future. Having this knowledge allows the ability to guide others on the road as well.

What should I do? To understand better, learn what goes into building defining moments. Read, strive to engineer defining moments in your life, and perhaps more importantly, create defining moments for your coworkers and customers.


The following idea originated after reading the Moment of Insight section in The Power of Moments.

If you’re a member of the Service Roundtable, you have access to a wealth of knowledge, information, and ideas in both the Download center and the Idea Exchange.

Based on this Heath brothers’ statement, “Action leads to insight more often than insight leads to action,” mine these resources with the intent to share with your coworkers and business acquaintances. The more insight you distribute, the more you’ll gain.

Think about the life you are leading today. Will people one day think of you as their Mr. Goldman?

For more information on becoming a member, visit ServiceRoundtable.com to expand your mind and business today.


Topics: Business Growth, Marketing, business culture, Building a Business, Business Leadership, Management, Leadership, Plumbing, hvac, learning, knowledge, family business, team building

Posted by Dave Rothacker on Dec 16, 2017 10:00:00 AM

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