top of page

Using the Tipping Point Theory for Laserfiche Adoption

Sometimes technology adoption just gets “stuck.” Over my years selling Laserfiche, I’ve often heard from a City Clerk or a Records Manager or an IT Manager that they’d like to have more departments using Laserfiche. Still, they can’t seem to get other staff members interested. One approach is to use the principles developed by Malcolm Gladwell in his book, The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference.

Gladwell defines the tipping point as:

“The moment of critical mass, the threshold, the boiling point when Ideas and products and messages and behaviors spread as viruses do."

So, you ask, “What does this have to do with expanding my Laserfiche install?” To which I respond that you reframe the question as, “What does it take to grow a single department implementation of Laserfiche into an enterprise one?” Gladwell has determined that there are three “rules of epidemics” that–in our case–we can use to increase the Laserfiche buy-in.

  • The Law of the Few- Gladwell defines this law as, “The success of any kind of social epidemic is heavily dependent on the involvement of people with a particular and rare set of social gifts.” Hence, much like Liam Neeson in the movie Taken, you will need teammates with a particular set of skills.

    • Connectors- Connectors are the members of a community who know large numbers of people. Essentially, connectors are a hub of the wheel. Not surprisingly, in municipalities, connectors are often the city clerk, records manager, or IT person. Because of the nature of their work, all three of these roles deal with staff across the organization. Ideally, they are often the role that “owns” Laserfiche.

    • Mavens- Are information specialists or subject matter experts with a deep and wide bench. They also have the helpful gene, want to solve problems, and are excellent communicators. Sounds a lot like a City Clerk, right? Interestingly if I were to prototype the typical Laserfiche “owner,” they would be either a Connector or a Maven. When these two types of people combine their skills, the result is highly impactful.

    • Persuaders- Persuaders, are the type of people who make others want to agree with them. In cities, they are frequently the City Manager or the Head of Communications. This is the person who helps you persuasively communicate the value of Laserfiche. Some agencies use their internal newsletter to communicate Laserfiche wins.; others use staff meetings. In a session, having the Persuader lead is critical to get your message across.

  • The Stickiness Factor- This refers to the specific content of the message that makes it memorable. Your PR team will be good at this. One agency built some comedic workflows so that staff would recall the demo. Another showed their entire operational process and then helped the group extrapolate so that departments without Laserfiche could imagine how it would help them. Some agencies use stories and case studies to get excited about a Laserfiche project. Stories are incredibly sticky. It’s why since the Stone Age, we’ve shared them around the campfire.

  • The Power of Context- Humans are naturally sensitive to and influenced by their environment. In short, time, place, and circumstance are essential for motivation. For example, we see Laserfiche installations expand when a city reboots its retention schedules, has a new compliance mandate, or wants to decrease paper storage costs. Because Laserfiche is immediately relevant to solving the problem, it gleans more support.

I hope you found some of Gladwell’s ideas exciting and possibly practical. If you’d like to brainstorm about increasing your Laserfiche footprint, please contact me at



bottom of page