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Evil Works

As does good, but it's easy to overlook that fact.

True Change requires force. Structures and habits roost upon study foundations of inertia and fear. They won't be moved except through sustained, herculean force.

Often, the only tactics that comes to mind to clear blockage are conflict-driven. You can't smooth talk a form, so getting angry at red tape at the DMV seems like the most obvious solution.

But there's a selection bias at work here.

We view our world through the lens of stories. Naturally, more memorable stories affect us more than the boring ones simply because we can recall them easier (aka cognitive fluency). .

Conflict is far more interesting than snuggling.

In fact, a 2010 Wharton study confirms that
“the most powerful predictor of virality is how much anger an article evokes” [emphasis mine]. I will say it again: The most powerful predictor of what spreads online is anger. ...
...Anger has such a profound effect that one standard deviation increase in the anger rating of an article is the equivalent of spending an additional three hours as the lead story on the front page of  (Except from Trust Me, I'm Lying: Confessions of a Media Manipulator, via Barking Up The Wrong Tree
It's easier to recall famous artist meltdowns than it is to recall skillful mediation, leading us to more easily make the connection between "aggression" and "success".

Throwing a guitar at your band mates in the recording studio makes for a fantastic story, it's "emotionally loud". Sitting down with your bassist over drinks to talk about what's been bugging her lately and where her creative block came from makes for dreadfully boring reading, it's "emotionally quiet".

You can accomplish great things by being a jerk. I'll be first to admit, that sometimes you have to get aggressive to break past resistance.

But pay attention to the leaders you admire and you'll begin to pick up on their methods. Sometimes all you need to get someone to put forth their best effort is to get them to publicly commit that they'll put forward their best effort. (see my Negotiation Without Being A Jerk series for additional tactics)

Real, positive leadership power isn't about using deception and coercion to meet your ends. "Light Side" persuasive methods use soft force, so that even if the target of the message understands exactly what you're doing, they wouldn't be mad at you. The same could not be said for gaslighting, an effective but terribly manipulative method of planting false memories and instilling doubt.

As you dig deeper into management and psychology, you'll begin to see the framework that managers act within. Most are of mixed style, only rarely will you see a pure-evil or pure-good individual.

Be aware that people are naturally attracted to others like themselves.

The strategies you use will create your environment.

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