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Sway: The Irresistible Pull of Irrational Behavior (2008)

af Ori Brafman, Rom Brafman

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
1,2493911,922 (3.58)31
A journey into the hidden psychological influences that derail our decision-making. Why is it so difficult to end a doomed relationship? Why do we listen to advice just because it came from someone "important"? Why are we more likely to fall in love when there's danger involved? Here, organizational thinker Ori Brafman and his brother, psychologist Rom Brafman, answer these questions and more. Drawing on research from the fields of social psychology, behavioral economics, and organizational behavior, Sway reveals forces that influence every aspect of our personal and business lives, including loss aversion, the diagnosis bias, and the "chameleon effect." The Brafmans not only uncover rational explanations for a wide variety of irrational behaviors, but also point readers toward ways to avoid succumbing to their pull.--From publisher description.… (mere)
  1. 20
    Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion af Robert B. Cialdini (espertus)
    espertus: Influence is the classic book on how people make up their minds. Sway is a lesser, but still valuable, addition to the field.
  2. 00
    Being Wrong: Adventures in the Margin of Error af Kathryn Schulz (bragan)
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» Se også 31 omtaler

Engelsk (39)  Hollandsk (1)  Alle sprog (40)
Viser 1-5 af 40 (næste | vis alle)
A fun review of some of the factors that go into our decision making especially those irrational decisions we may be prone to making. I assume if we are more aware of the psychological factors that play a role in our decision making, we'll be able to make better decisions, but it's unlikely a quick read like this will make lasting differences in our decision making. Nonetheless, it's was an interesting read, and Brafman makes a number of good points.
( )
  rsutto22 | Jul 15, 2021 |
This is one of the most important books I have read and I have a feeling that I will use the information for years to come. A must read for students of human nature. ( )
  Colleen5096 | Oct 29, 2020 |
Science Lite, and a really fast read (got through it in an evening), but full of interesting tidbits - the difference between what we think we're thinking and what's actually going on in our heads makes great food for, er, thought. ( )
  RJ_Stevenson | Aug 19, 2020 |
A look at the psychological tendencies we humans have that lead us to make irrational decisions, with lots of examples illustrating those tendencies and their results, from an airline pilot taking off without tower clearance and crashing into another plane, to basketball coaches not putting their objectively best players on the court most often, to people who become less likely to support a toxic waste dump in their town when offered financial compensation for it.

This is far from the most detailed or in-depth book on this subject. (If you want a really deep dive into many aspects of human irrationality, I recommend David Kahneman's Thinking, Fast and Slow instead.) But with its breezy writing and vivid examples of irrational thinking that are often interesting stories in their own right, it's a very, very readable one. (Admittedly, there are one or two of those examples I might have some reservations about, but that's a fairly small quibble.) The book seems to be primarily aimed at businesspeople, who are unlikely to have much of a background in psychology, but who really do need to be aware of widespread decision-making pitfalls. For someone like that, I'd say it's a good first introduction to the subject, with some useful advice, but a merciful absence of the kind of rah-rah motivational rhetoric or annoying corporatespeak you often get in books aimed at businesspeople. ( )
1 stem bragan | Nov 7, 2017 |
I’ve been considering people’s motivations, trying to figure out why we make the choices we do, in an attempt to understand what may have precipitated the actions of characters I’m writing about. Sway caught my eye on the list of books I wanted to read and turned out to be a pretty interesting. Unexpectedly, this book gave me a lot to think about as far as trying to come up with rationales (however irrational) for why my characters might make the choices they do.

The Brafman brothers illustrate their point of view by using some high profile instances of irrational decision making, such as the crash of KLM Flight 4805 in which 584 people died, the space shuttle crash, people and business references that the general public would be familiar with.

I think it was a good strategy to use these, the material is actually quite profound. It is easy to follow the logic of irrational behavior when you can place yourself in the situation. Which was a funny place to be, considering it forces you to realize how many time you personally have made irrational decisions.

Ori, who has an MBA, relates his first day of business school. During the first class Professor Roberto Fernandez stated to the students, “People aren’t rational.” Then he went on to illustrate just how irrational they are by way of a film showing doctors performing open heart surgery and pouring asbestos onto the heart. And in another example they examined an engineer report about “...the likelihood of a mechanical failure as temperatures drop.” evidence that NASA had concerning the O-rings predicted failure before the launch of the space shuttle Challenger. “Fernandez’s point was that although we all like to think of ourselves as rational, we’re much more prone to irrational behavior than we realize.”

Each of the books chapters center around one particular habit or trait of irrational behavior. One such is “Diagnosis Bias” such as when a health care professional mistakenly assigns you a label like, “overly protective mother” and dismisses vital signs of a serious health problem as described in the preface. Another chapter centered on “Loss Aversion” I think one of the more prevalent irrational behaviors, and one I can see most people identifying with. It is when you perceive a loss to be greater than the real loss. There were several examples using phone or cable service. We’ll pay more for an “unlimited time use” because we are afraid of what we’d lose if we had to stay within a limit and pay more if we exceed it, even though we have the evidence that we don’t exceed it, it’s the implied “what if I do” that gets us to act irrationally.

I won’t go into all the stories, there are so many in what is a small book it’s hard to pick out just a few. I am already rereading it, taking notes for ideas on character behavior. This was interesting to think about from a writing standpoint. To think about my characters not behaving because of a clearly defined childhood event or circumstance but acting irrationally as anyone of us is prone to do.

The one irrational behavior the book talked about is one that gives me more reason to hate the current school system and what I’d already considered to be irrational behavior. Money as incentive for academic excellence, it just doesn’t work. Teachers can not put the students needs ahead of their own if outcomes are tied to monetary rewards.

MRI’s show “...the pleasure center and the altruistic center cannot both function at the same time: either one or the other is in control.” Meaning, that teachers teach for the high of inspiring students -the altruistic or they do it for the bonus -the pleasure.

“Neuropsychologist have shown that activities associated with addictive substances and those associated with monetary rewards are both processed by the pleasure center. Because monetary incentives present such a strong allure to us they distort our thinking.” What happens is teachers instead of acting in the interests of the students, that is inspiring them to learn, they instead, become focused on test scores “chasing the reward.” ( )
  LynneMF | Aug 20, 2017 |
Viser 1-5 af 40 (næste | vis alle)
“Sway” moves along swiftly, with each nugget of a chapter illustrating an aspect of the authors’ premise. They use dramatic narratives like the story of an accomplished pilot who made a seemingly irrational decision that sent 584 passengers (and him) to their deaths
 

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A journey into the hidden psychological influences that derail our decision-making. Why is it so difficult to end a doomed relationship? Why do we listen to advice just because it came from someone "important"? Why are we more likely to fall in love when there's danger involved? Here, organizational thinker Ori Brafman and his brother, psychologist Rom Brafman, answer these questions and more. Drawing on research from the fields of social psychology, behavioral economics, and organizational behavior, Sway reveals forces that influence every aspect of our personal and business lives, including loss aversion, the diagnosis bias, and the "chameleon effect." The Brafmans not only uncover rational explanations for a wide variety of irrational behaviors, but also point readers toward ways to avoid succumbing to their pull.--From publisher description.

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