More influencing lessons from a child activist

In my last piece, I unpacked the influencing secrets of child activist Greta Thunberg who spoke at the WEF’s annual conference in Davos last month. This week, a very different sort of child activist... Some years after Al Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth” came out, I was at a lunch gathering where everyone was talking about Global warming. What triggered the topic was the soaring summer temperatures that year. Some raved about the film, saying it had gone a long way towards explaining a complex problem. Some expressed dislike for the movie not because they were deniers but because it made them feel so powerless to act. My cousin’s wife, in particular, said: “All it made me want to do was go h

Influencing lessons from a child activist

“Child activists” are having more and more influence on important issues. What do they teach us about influence? In late August 2018, a pigtailed schoolgirl sat down in protest at the entrance to the Swedish Parliament. She was Greta Thunberg (15) and her demand was simple: “reduce carbon emissions in line with the 2015 Paris Accords or I won’t go back to school”. Thunberg showed up every day for three weeks. Soon students from at least 270 cities in 12 countries were showing solidarity and Thunberg would speak at both TEDxStockholm and COP24 in December. This week, (barely 4 months after her crusade began), Thunberg was the focal point of a Twitter melee over the World Economic Forum’s

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