Social Power Moves and Book Summaries With Lucio Buffalmano of The Power Moves

BookSummaryClub Blog Social Power Moves and Book Summaries With Lucio Buffalmano of The Power Moves

For this special post, I was lucky enough to interview Lucio Buffalmano from the popular blog and YouTube channel, The Power Moves.

Lucio the power moves

In this exclusive interview, we cover a lot of the content that Lucio covers on his sites, along with a bit of an insight into being a successful blogger, course creator, and general content creator.

Interview with Lucio Buffalmano of The Power Moves

Lucio Buffalmano is a social scientist and the founder of The Power Moves, a learning platform for social and power dynamics, emotional intelligence, and leadership.

Lucio studied communication and social research, but albeit he loved social research, he didn’t pursue a career in academia.

He was not fond of academia’s strictures, politics, and “unwritten rules”, and he felt that personal growth was too slow in that environment.

He craved quicker learning, new experiences and first-hand knowledge of the world.

So he went into business, globetrotting around Europe and seeking the most disparate environments, from business process outsourcing while still a student to big corporations to high-powered startups.

Lucio always sought customer-facing, leadership or sales roles because he thought that was the best way to learn about influence and persuasion. And plus, he felt he needed that pressure to counter his otherwise introvert nature (and it worked:  today he defines himself more as an ambivert).

Lucio keeps pushing himself hard to grow and learn.
But he is happy of doing so outside of offices, spending most of his time researching, writing, traveling and experiencing the world.

Thank you so much for doing this with us! Our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you share your “backstory” with us?

My pleasure, thank you for the opportunity 🙂

When did you start reading and taking notes?

As soon as I could read, I read a lot.

Well, I didn’t start with actual books of course.

It was comics in the beginning, and I devoured them. I once remember my brother taking my 312-pages comic book -yes, I remember the number of pages because that one prided itself on being the biggest comic book on sale :)- and ask me “did you actually read all of this?”

Then he turned to my parents holding that thick book and said: “tschhhh, look at this, he read all of this”.

As I grew, I sought more real-world knowledge.

I always wanted to know how things work. But more than “things”, like engines and machines, I wanted to know nature and people.

I remember the first shopping I did on AbeBooks as soon as I moved to university.

These were discarded library books which were soo cheap: I thought I had hit the jackpot.

That was my “get to know everything project” and back then my mindset was:

Outside of exam periods, I am going to read a couple of books on each discipline and once I’m done, I will know everything!

LOL, how naive of me.

Socrates springs to mind: the only true wisdom is knowing you know nothing.

Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started your career?

Many book summaries and reviews online focus on the positives. That’s cool, but it’s not my style.

I focus on the inconsistencies and “holes” as much as on the positives: I believe that’s the best contribution I can give to readers.

And if I feel a book has lots of holes and little value, I say that too.

I guess you can see where I’m going?

Of course, I stumbled upon the angry author who didn’t like my review and got the lawyers involved. And the lawyers did what lawyers often do and quickly went into threats-mode.

Back then I didn’t have the knowledge and power to fight it, which is a perfect case for what The Power Moves is about: if you want to do good for the world, you must learn how to cope with the bad of the world.

Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

Mistakes… A lot.

About the funniest one, hmmm, let me think.

I once wrote the summary of “Instant Influence” thinking it was Cialdini’s sequel to “Influence”.

So stuck I was in that mindset that I never checked and only, later on, I realized that… Ooops, it was Michael Pantalon who wrote “Instance Influence”, and had nothing to do with Cialdini.

From that one, I learned to check the author and their background, which also provides great insights into their work.

Ok, thank you for that. Let’s now jump to the main focus of our interview. You write about social dynamics and power. In a nutshell, what is the relationship between knowledge and power?

We all heard the saying that “knowledge is power”.

And that much is true.

However, it’s also true what Napolen Hill said many years ago: general knowledge confers little power and little riches.

Hill says that it’s specialized knowledge which infers power. And, most power of all, goes to the people who know how to access that specialized knowledge from all disparate fields (for example employers who hire and combine the specialized knowledge of lawyers, engineers, etc.).

He is right when it comes to resource acquisition.

Yet, general wisdom does not preclude business acumen. As a matter of fact, any kind of knowledge is likely to enhance entrepreneurial skills.

And when it comes to social power, the relationship between knowledge is a bit more complex because money is only one way to acquire power.

Hill provides the example of general knowledge in the form of teachers and professors, who all have little power, he says.

Yet, professors and teachers are highly respected members of society. They are regarded as authorities worthy of respect and worth being listened to.

When it comes to interpersonal relationships, general knowledge and wisdom actually confer lots of social power to the repositories of that knowledge (intimate relationships included).

Can you elaborate more and talk to our readers a bit about the benefits?  Why do you think it is worthwhile to invest resources and energy into this? 

Into knowledge, you mean?

Actually, I don’t necessarily think that anyone should invest time and effort in knowledge. There are plenty of ways to live a happy, meaningful life without constantly seeking new wisdom.

I know that sounds strange coming from me, but I think that when you tell others they should invest energy into what you think is worthwhile, well…

That is the equivalent of saying “my way of living is better because… “.
And when people push that narrative too hard, I find it arrogant.

Brought it to an extreme, it becomes a game of “who is better”.
The monk tells non-monks it sucks to be slave of materialistic possessions.

The entrepreneur tells non-entrepreneurs it sucks to be an employee. And the vegetarian tells non-vegetarians that you suck for eating meat.

I find that attitude aggressively egocentric, so I call myself out of it by not telling anyone they should do what I do.

My mindset is simply to do what I think is worth doing. And those who feel the same will naturally tend to group together.

And if you are referring to investing energies into learning power dynamics, I also don’t necessarily think that everyone will benefit from it.

Imagine someone who likes a simple life and has a job where he is OK doing what his boss tells him to do. He does not even care about advancing in work and life and has found a supportive partner and they are both committed to each other, no matter what happens.

Well, that person is in great shape. He can go on about his life happy and (relatively) safe.

But that’s the whole point why I seek to see, understand and influence the power dynamics around me.

Because I am driven, because I don’t trust going through life hoping that everyone will be nice, because I cannot stand abuse and bullying and because I am not OK with people who take advantage of others.

But that’s just me.

And if people don’t feel the same, I am hardly going to try convincing them they should invest energy and resources in learning what I am learning (and now teaching).

Let’s talk about business opportunities specifically. Can you share a few examples of how increasing your knowledge can help a business grow or create lucrative opportunities? 

Great question and we go back now to specific knowledge VS general knowledge.

If you have an online business for example, then online marketing skills are what allows a good author to thrive instead of just surviving.

But I believe an entrepreneur should always seek more knowledge, even from different fields, for a simple reason: serendipity.

Random connections are exactly what have often allowed people to hit that “Eureka moment” they would have otherwise never come to fruition.

“Eureka moments” can solve very real practical problems or can help entrepreneurs clarify the values and culture of their business.

I think for example of Rai Dalio. Ralio Dalio shaped much of his company’s culture as he learned natural sciences. He implemented the “invisible hand” of nature that optimizes for the whole instead of the individual and does so with a total lack of ego.

Ok. Now that we have that behind us, we’d love to hear your thoughts about how to eventually increase your knowledge and power.  Can you share 5 tactics every person should implement to increase their knowledge, and therefore, power?

I will tell you from a point of view of social skills and social power dynamics:

  • Study and take notes
  • Seek connections between what you learn and what happened in your life (that’s how you internalize the learning, increasing your EQ)
  • Keep a journal of your interactions, and especially focus on:
  • What you think were the motives for certain actions (helps increase your understanding of practical psychology)
  • What you think would have been a more effective behavior from your side, and why (increases your social intelligence and persuasive power)

This is what I help the Social Power customers do on the private forums.

Can you please give us your favorite  “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life? 

It’s in your darkest hours that men are born and characters are forged.

That’s my own quote, and it reminds me of how I grew the most in the most difficult period of my life.

As a matter of fact, I think of my most difficult days as a watershed time of my life. My second birth, where I went from a naive kid to an adult.

How can our readers follow you on social media?

This is the YouTube channel, where ThePowerMoves shares knowledge on power dynamics, influence and social strategies.

Otherwise, I think the forum of might be the best way to keep up with the latest news since I use it a bit like status updates on what’s going on with me and in the world.

Thank you so much for your insights. This was very insightful and meaningful.

Absolutely my pleasure mate, keep up the great work at, I will be watching, reading and rooting for you!

Hey, I’m Erik… a Swedish university student, marketing professional, and life-long learner. Here at BookSummaryClub I summarize my favorite non-fiction books into easily digested posts. Hope you like what you’re reading!

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