The social psychologist Robert Cialdini is a pioneer in the science of persuasion. His 1984 book Influence is a classic, and he has just published an expanded and revised edition. In this episode of the Freakonomics Radio Book Club, he gives a master class in the seven psychological levers that bewitch our rational minds and lead us to buy, behave, or believe without a second thought.
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we like to think We make up our own minds that we make our own choices about. We spend our time and money what we action where how we think about the issues of the day, but the truth is we are influenced into. These choices in ways, large and small, and often invisible, saw of this influence- may be harmless, even fun, and some of it. armless at all, that's right you make a really provocative button resident argument that out of behaviors are copycat behaviors, including work, waste or school shootings terrorist attacks, product tampering. which should media outlets do about those Vince, you may say their coverage is dangerous. They say it's their duty to cover it in
tensely why're you more right than they are because of that last word intensely. They give us the news. They are invaluable for that, the problem is when they sensationalize it for ratings. That bothers me, because the action, described are contagious, perceiving it right now with shootings, just a cluster of them, one after other after another, because people are learning from the news. What other disturbed people do to resolve their issues? our guest today is among the world's experts on the power of influence. My name is Robert shall Dini behavioral scientist with a specialty and persuasion science. shall dean. You spent decades as a professor at Arizona State University where he now enjoys in Amerika standing. I
become just as busy as I ever was. My wife says: how do you know that chill Dini has retired. He doesn't have to deal with those pesky paychecks. It long years and years and years ago, child Any realised that he was ass, he puts it a Patsy. As long as I can recall, he once wrote. I had been an easy mark for the pitches of peddlers fund, razors and operators of one sort or another and so in the early nineties eighties. He embarked on a research project, He D we need to learn the tricks of these salespeople and other influencers Gardini was already a professor. By now in this, new research would certainly have academic value, but its primary goal was to help the rest of us, tumors voters, regular tax, paying lay people because, through their taxes,
and contributions to universities. They had paid for me to do that research. I found some things out, but I wasn't communicating it to them. I always say that if experimental social psychology had been a business, it would have been famous for great research and development unit but it wouldn't have had a shipping department, but in this case Cellini did ship in the form of a book. He wrote about this research. It was called influence. The psychology of persuasion it was published in nineteen. Eighty four: it sold only a few thousand copies, but word of mouth After three years it became a New York Times best seller, and then they kept selling and kept selling and kept selling compound influence. As of today sold roughly five million copies in forty four languages. Just left
Dear child says the books old, nearly three hundred thousand copies. There is a good chance. You have read influence. If not it's a good chance you should among the readers are many regular people. Consumers like Cellini himself, who no longer want to be exploited for the book, also became a blueprint for profit, tears and others who wish to exploit the powerful psychological effect he identified. Child beanie, like a character in some ancient fairy tail, has found himself advising both sides of the bargaining table? Now he is released a new and aggressively expanded edition of his book. Here is an excerpt. There are some people who know very well, where the levers of automatic influence lie and who employ them regularly and expertly to get what they want the secret to their effect.
if Miss lies in the way these structure their requests, the way they are, themselves with one or Another of the levers of influence exist in the social environment. To do so may take no more than one correctly chosen. Word that engages the strong psychological principle and launches one of our automatic behaviour programmes, I'm curious whether this addition is to some degree a mayor culpa for having given the scrupulous users bible to become even more unscrupulous, I wouldn't use, may a copper information can be used for good or ill. But if I were to limit myself only to the end, formation that couldn't be used properly. There would be no information. One of the creators
the atomic bomb Rapid Oppenheimer was apparently tortured for most of his life. About that ethical conundrum of needing to help invent this instrument of war to end were too while creating new whinstone of war that were obviously still dealing with my senses. That's a good parallel to you. Correct is a different level of unfortunate circumstance. We shouldn't downgrade the level of influence that your book has had. I could imagine many desperate and dictators have read it. So I try to do is emphasised the ethical uses to make it difficult for people to try to use it in untoward ways. the new edition of influence does indeed emphasise the ethics of persuasion. It's also hundred pages longer than the original and includes slew of recent findings from behavioral and social psychology. The original book explained what shall dna
of the six levers of influence, for instance, social proof, the idea that He simply see a lot of people like yourself doing something you are more likely to do it to that, the idea we were discussing earlier about the contagion of mass shootings, social proof may also, eight, whether you wear a face mass score, listened given podcast the new edition of influence adds a seventh lever which Aldini calls unity This idea is especially interesting at a moment in which the- U S at least, seems less unified than it has in a long time. Meanwhile, the allegedly route. hired Shall Dini still runs a consulting firm, whose clients include Microsoft, Coca COLA, Pfizer So today I M this edition of the frequent comics radio book club. We are getting our own consultation, free of charge or master class in the science of persuasion begins ran after this.
From sticking and ran, but radio. This is pre economics, radio, the that explores the hidden side of every thing. Here's your host, even governor, as soon as Robert Codine started the research that would eventually become his book influence? He realized that the perfect nor persuaded he wanted to learn from wouldn't divulge their secrets. If we simply ask them not only did I get turned down, but everything, I read told me that these organizations, they don't want their competitors to know, and sometimes they don't want their customers to know what they're doing so. Turning to go under cover and join these firms himself, he posed as a trainee named Rob Calder what kind of
trees did Cellini infiltrate back. In these days there were door to door salespeople before encyclopedias and nutritional supplements and so on. So we did that we did insurance, we did cars, we did portrait, photography and advertising from. just to clarify cellinis using the royal we hear he did this research on his own. There were people whose businesses to get us to contribute to a particular cause. There were armed service, recruiters and corporate recruiters. There were pr people. I even studied cult recruiters. How long a period was this in Toto about two and a half years. But, to be honest, I had everything I needed in six months, because what I found after that was pretty much the same thing just
A broader range of instances that must have persuaded do that the principles were in fact, principles. Yes, yes, these were the seven that kept coming up in all of the train. in programmes, I infiltrated, and what this allows us is you don't have to carry around along compendium of these things. Have you ever seen these lists of behavioral science? biases. There's like a hundred of well know, they're, just seven, we Handle. Seven here is shall Dini. Reading from the introduction to the new edition of influence. This book is organized around these seven principles, russification, liking, social proof, authority scarcity, commitment, inconsistency and unity, each principle
is examined as to its ability to produce a distinct kind of automatic. Mindless compliance from people, a willingness to say yes without thinking. First, you rate throughout the book debt autumn, nativity automatic responses is key to influence that you want people to make a decision without thinking about it I ask that we live in the most information, overloaded, stimulus, saturated environment. That's ever existed, so we need to be able to make our choices based on short cut decisions. Is this person truly an authority? Is their real scarcity here. Do I really like this person Those are the triggers that normally steer us correctly
into saying yes, and so, if we can extract those from the massive information, then were able to be both efficient and effective. our choices. Such Aldini had identified these seven psychological principles during a couple years of undercover work as a trainee in different industries. before reading the book. However, he faced the dilemma. I felt professionally are required to get their informed consent and I thought what could I Do because all the game was gonna, be my. The loss was gonna, be there if they just let me use everything I learned, and so I thought well are used the principle of reciprocity and the one that says people want to give back to those who have given to them. So when I exited a group I would say to the trainer, look, I'm not who I said I was I'm not
looking for a job in your organization. My name isn't Rob Calder I'm really writing a book on the influence process and I want to learn from the pros, like you and I'll, tell you what I'm going to do, whether you say yes Oh no, I'm going to send you a pre publication copy of my book so that you will learn everything. I've learned before your competitors do that worked for a percentage of the people, but not all of them. It wasn't until I did something I didn't even recognize was a principle of influence. They said what eerie writing a book. I would say yes, I'm a university professor. My area of expertise is persuasion and social influence, and I came to you to learn at your knee essentially because I think you have the info
immigration I need, and they would say, you're a college. Professor and we're your teach and they puffed up their chests and say of course you can use the material you're good. You are good, I didn't even know I was doing it. I was just being honest with them and I assigned the role of teacher. Will teachers, don't hoard information teachers district, it. So did anyone give you a blanket? No Stephen one hundred percent compliance tribunal had also want to get a job as a leader in restaurants, since that such an obviously hands on weight to influence what the consumer will buy. I couldn't get it
is a waiter- I just Didn'T- have the experience for it, but to get a job as a bus boy, and I could watch one particular waiter Vincent, whose proceeds outstripped everybody else's. a lot he would change his strategy from situations situation. If it's a couple on a date, he would be imperious try to intimidate the young man into spending a lot. If it was married couple, he would, be cordial and friendly use the liking principle speaking to both people. If it was a family, he was it. a little clownish. She would speak to the kids and entertain them and so on, but here was his real masterpiece for large groups. He would ask the first person for an order: usually a woman and no matter what she ordered. He would frown
mean down, so everyone could hear and see. That's Billina is good tonight as it normally is, and then he'd, recommend something's rightly less expensive from the menu. Then, this in this are really good tonight. So what he did was to say I'm being so honest with you, I'm willing to I commend something that will give me less of a tip. Then, when he returned at the end he would say. Would you like me to recommend a dessert mine or a dessert, and people would all look at each other of course, Vincent you know what's good here and you have our interests at heart and they would spend on I'm an dessert, Events, in one reason I found it so appealing is because it shows how important it is
to a red people and be be flexible exactly. This is why, when people ask me so Doktor Chilton, which of the principles, is the most power, I told them. The single most effective influence tactic is not to have a single influence tat it. What's the difference between in, whence and manipulation doesnt. The former often contain a lot of the ladder yeah, and the big difference is whether the principles of influence are employed by pointing to them where they naturally exist, verses, manufacturing or counterfeiting them. In the book you tell the story of your brother when you were much younger than he would buy and resell used cars, and his big trick was to tell all the prospective buyers to come view the car
At the same time, so you have everybody, come Sunday at two p m to create a sense of demand or false scarcity. So I dont know if it's manipulative, but it's a little bit on the dishonest side, is entirely the sun. He was benefiting from a false narrative that he constructed of scarcity in competition for the same resource is your brother There are still alive and well, I hope he is so. What is You think when he reads that story about himself in your book, he's proud of it. I'd like to go through the seven levers, let's start with russification, Precipitation is the rule that is installed they and all of us in every human culture? That says we are obligated to give back to others the form of behaviour they first given to US
Can you give an example where the power of reciprocity is used in a nefarious, Sir Elisa pronouncedly selfish way? One has to do with the use of gifts to prescribing physicians from pharmaceutical companies. There is very, strong evidence that shows that if those companies give gifts as small as pizza for the office staff, those physicians prescribe that pharmaceuticals drugs more. The same is true for legislators. So say that you are consulting now for a pharmaceutical firms who wants to use the principles of influence to their gain, but they also want to use them ethically and they say he bob. For years we ve done exactly what you say, one shouldn't do, which is used: the principle of reciprocity,
kind of shady way. We give these doctors fancy free trips and we expect them to prescribe our drugs lo and behold they do. What are you tell them? I tell them to give them non material gifts that will benefit all concerned. For example, you can put together a white paper for them on a particular topic information they might not have had without your research team, but then I think White Paper verses care an vacation and that's hard sell. No well caribbean vacation, that's rare, it doesn't have to be caribbean vacation. It could be something like lunch. This is a key point in chaldees our.
These levers of influence are so powerful that even a small action can produce a relatively large response. Just how powerful is the pull of reciprocity. Here's another passage from the book take, for instance, the account of student of mine concerning a day she remembers ruefully about one year ago I couldn't start my car and, as I was sitting there, a die in the parking lot came over and eventually jump start at the car. I said thanks and he said, you're welcome ass. He was leaving, I said that if he ever needed a favour to stop by about a month later, the guy knocked on my door and asked to borrow my car for two hours as his was in the shop, I felt somewhat obligated but uncertain. Since the car was pretty new and he looked very young later I found out that he was under age and had no insurance anyway
let him the car he totalled it. Let's talk about the sex lever of influence. Now what you call liking. First of all, I have to say you are incredibly likeable will think you you're welcome it. He's been this way or did you apply these principles to yourself? I grew up in it. Entirely italian family and are predominantly polish neighborhood in a historically german city Milwaukee in otherwise rural state and it influenced my interest in the influence process. Because whenever I would move from one domain to another, the codes of conduct changed the things that people Most resonated too, in the presentation of an idea or request would shift according to
the norms and histories of those particular groups, and I recognized immediately Oh how you modulate your reproach, Wilma. ah Julie, your success, pending on your understanding of the situation and the audience likeable illness was in there, so I probably was reinforced for it. you write that it is much easier to sell something were to persuade someone if they like you, which makes perfect sense. But how do you make someone like you warm is point to genuine similarities that you share. The other is praise because, first of all, people like those who are like them, and secondly, they like those who, like them and say so,
Car salespeople, for example, are trained to look for evidence such things while examining a customer's trade in if there's camping gear, in the trunk the salespeople might mention later on how they to get away from the city whenever they can. If there are gulf balls on the back seat, they might remain. They hope the rain will hold off until they can play the eighteen holes. They ve get your for the next day in nineteen. Twenty, the psychologist, Edward L, Thorndyke, conducted a study. Military officers, he asked them to read their subordinates qualities, including leadership, ability, intelligence, their physical attributes and so on. Thorndyke found that A positive rating in one category, physical attractiveness, for instance, or even just hate, seemed to Coralie
with a high rating in seemingly unrelated qualities like intelligence. This week to be known as the halo effect. It can work both ways, amplifying negative or positive attributes, and It plays a big role in chaldees liking principle. In his book. He cites research by the economist, Daniel Hamish, who estimated that, over the course of one's career being attractive, earns a worker, an extra two hundred and thirty thousand dollars. Here's another excerpt from influence a study of a canadian federal election found attractive candidates receive more the two and a half times as many votes as unattractive once follow up. Research demonstrated voters did not realise their bias. In fact, seven three percent of canadian voters surveyed didn't night in this
strongest possible terms that their votes had been influenced by physical appearance, only fourteen percent even allowed for the remote possibility of such influence Their experiments have demonstrated that attractive people are more likely to obtain help when in need and are more persuasive in changing the opinions of an audience? The third lever of influence in the book is so proof we are more likely to say yes to a proposal. a recommendation. If we have evidence that a lot of others like us have been doing so, the power of social proof is so substantial that people who watch
A presidential debate on tv are said to be significantly swayed by the magnitude and direction of the applause at the live event. This is not at all a recent phenomenon as Cellini rights in influence. There is a phenomenon called clacking said to have begun in eighteen. Twenty by a pair of Paris opera House Habitue Ways named, saw and poor shape. The men were more than Opera Gore's, though they were business men whose product was applause. And they knew how to structure social proof to incite it, organizing their business under the title less the wrong. They succeed, from tea, they lease themselves and their employees Two singers and opera managers who wish to be
he assured of an appreciative audience response so effective where small talk Ambrosch shape in stimulating genuine audience reaction with their rigged reactions that before long clap usually consisting of a leader, shifty clock and several, the visual clock course had become in this. Established and persistent tradition throughout the world of opera as clacking grew and developed its practised nurse offered. An array of styles and strikes. The clue rose chosen for her ability to weep on cue be sure who called beats repeat an encore in is static. Tones and the real selected for the infectious quality of his laugh.
when I'm reading you writing about social proof. My mind goes to a lot of the negatives I think about Nazi Germany One gets caught up in seeing one's neighbours. Bosses said buying into a philosophy in politics it turned out to be horrible. Can you counter with some big upsides of our adherence to our appetite for social proof? Sure, let's take a study done in Japan in the covert. Nineteen pandemic, where they looked at the willingness of a japanese citizen to wear a mask, and they looked at a variety of possible reasons that their presence. should have the severity of the disease. The perception but they were susceptible to it. The perception that the people round them would be susceptible to it. None of those made any difference the only one that made any difference was the number of people
they saw wearing masks. It would seem like the internet is made for fabricating social proof. How big of a problem! Do you see that being big big problem, because it is very difficult for us to check on the validity of that information, but here's how we're dealing with it on those review sites that we check before we make a purchase? The average number of stars that most led to a purchase is not five. It is a sweet spot of between four point two and four point: seven stars, because five is just too good to be true. It's too good to be true tat for a moment about the relationship between social proof and suicide. I was shocked at the research about the rising crime plane crashes after why they reported suicide. What
see. Is that front page suicides not only produce an increase in subsequent, besides, within a week of the publication, they also produce an increase in accidental deaths, car accidents and plane crashes. How could that possibly be well? It turns out that a lot of the people who cause those car crashes and plane crashes are committing secret suicide, their seeing other distressed p, like them ending at all and they follow suit and they cover it. For reasons have you do with insurance or shame for their families? Bob tell me
how people who read about Social Proof in the power of social prove, how they can do it wrong? What's the big mistake that communicators might make, there's a big mistake that public service communicators make with regard to social proof? They tell us that so many people are drinking and driving. So many teenagers are committing suicide, so many people choosing not to be vaccinated and what that does the legitimize their choice out of social proof of a lot of people are doing, and it must be the right thing to do. I have graduate student, who is coming to work with me from California and key and his fiancee, the woman he described as the single most honest person he had ever known in his life. She wouldn't borrow a paperclip that she didn't return. They decided well, let's go see. The
petrified forested, Northern Arizona on our way to work with, Shall Dini, and they were standing in front of a sign at the entrance. That said, so many people are stealing petrified wood and crystals that the forest is endangered some kind of language. Like that and my graduate student, while he was still reading. The sign felt this both in his ribs and his invariably honest fiance said we better get hours to the far it's all God. So that tells you about the power of social prove, something that would turn this honest woman into an environmental criminal, Let's pretend that we are about to go into an outbreak on the show and my desire is to keep listeners
from abandoning us during the commercial break? I'm not very good at influencing people. They settled think I am but you are so? Could you take over for a second and tell the list, whatever you need to tell him to stick around and come back. I'm gonna tell you which principle of influences utilization that had been kept secret. Until recently may have save the world by ending the cuban missile crisis drying. I tell you that child Dini good that secret story it's coming up after the break. In the meantime, I would like to invite you to follow the other podcast in the Friggin hammocks radio network no stupid questions. People mostly admire and too dear breaks the internet If you need a little encouragement to check him out, we have hired some good old fashioned french crackers
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sell you more stuff you dont need were convinced that their cause is the right course. That is where Cellini comes in. He exposes the psychological factors that led to pursue In his new expanded edition of influence, he describes seven principle: or levers that essentially bewitch, a rational mines and lead us to comply. That a second thought we ve already covered three of these laws, where's russification, like ability and social proof. The remaining four or are authority, scarcity, commitment, inconsistency and unity, but before we hear about them, let's get back to the cliffhanger shall didn't left us with before the break about the cuban missile crisis. As it turns out, there was hidden element to those crisis negotiations. I learned of it recently when there was
the release of information that had been kept secret for years? Many of your listeners, Stephen may not live through the cuban missile crisis. I did ass a teenager, the world trembled in fear, because of a conflict between the United States and the Soviet Union. At the time President Kennedy and Nikita Khrushchev being the leaders over the existence of nuclear weapons that had been sent to Cuba by the Soviet Union and pointed at the United States Kennedy issued an ultimatum to cruise ship. You have to get out of Cuba. There were already soviet ships coercing to Cuba with more missile,
Kennedy, said we're gonna blockade, those crucial said: that's an act of war. They were staring each other down, steely I'd until one of them blinked and this Worry we heard was that Khrushchev was the one who blinked it was candidates, steadfast refusal to compromise one whit that caused Khrushchev to take his missiles home. But that is not what actually happened. What J F K did was suppose a reciprocal resolution he said, will remove or missiles from Turkey if you remove those from Cuba. So it was the process of reciprocal action not being a hard ass. They did it and yet it was being tough and on yielding that
not all the play. You write that Kennedy made it a condition of the final agreement that the missile tradeoff be kept secret. He didn't want to be seen as conceding anything to the Soviets that right and that view by the way is said to have influence, author leaders, including one didn't Johnson in the way that he approached Vietnam afterward, You're saying the Johnson didn't know even Johnson didn't know it was kept from him. Let's talk about authority Now, let's say I by myself a long wait lab coat and walk into a hospital, and tell certified nurse assistant that a particular patient needs to get a bunch of estrogen right now. What happens? There was a study that was very close to that
someone called the nurses in various wards of hospitals and claimed to be a doctor on the staff who the nurse had never met and ordered the nurse to give a double dose of asked region to a patient they're not supposed to take these orders by phone? The dose was twice the maximum dose. That was on the bottle of estrogen, but ninety five percent of them were on their way to give the drug to this patient before they were in corrupted by a researcher who said wait, don't do that researchers in the. U S, correct yes, and the researchers concluded that one would think there would be multiple intelligence
is operating to decide whether to give this amount of drug or not? But it turns out that, because of the principle of authority and the difference that the nurses were giving to the physicians was only one. Such intelligence function its interest. A nurse is a trained, intelligent professional who, in the Is that you write about is essentially unthinkingly following an authorities directive? That's a pretty heightened example of how we often, as you point out, just don't we to think for ourselves. Can you expand on that a little bit the degree to which most of us want to be an auto pilot for almost all of our decisions. Thinking is hard, work is especially in an environment of such
challenge and change and overload. So it is simpler. Easier to use our shortcuts most of the time if there are well founded, they steerage correctly, but some percentage of the time they steers very poorly. It seems to me that, at least in the U S, the pole of the authority figure generally, has we and over the past half century, or so I would narrow it to the last fifteen years because of the internet and we can get authoritative. Pieces of information by looking at what our peers are doing, and so what is true for and
Fortunately, that is somebody who knows all the ins and outs may not be true for me sites like Tripadvisor they dont involved. Travel writers, anymore and the same with restaurants, yelp. It's about people like me, On the other hand, allegiance to authority is but his historically made civilization work yeah. It has because they typically had superior knowledge. I would ask myself to questions when we get a piece of evidence from an authority. Figure is this person truly an authority in the domain?
here. She is commenting on, and, secondly, can I expect this authority to be even handed in presenting this information, or is there self interest that might be confounding the picture? okay. Let's talk about scarcity for a bit, then the notion that people really want what they can't easily get you right that this is largely driven by something called psychological reactance. What is that so? The theory of reactants, which was developed by a social psychologist, Jack Brim says that we all cherish our freedoms and when we encounter anything that reduce. says or diminishes our freedom to choose. We react against that pressure. We pushed back against it and very often do the opposite,
even if we didn't even really want that everything so much you are young woman from Blackbird Virginia said. You know this reactions thing that you describe really helps me understand something that happened to me. Last year I was nineteen and I started dating a guy. Who was twenty six? Will my parents didn't like this and they kept pushing me to break up with him and the more they pushed the more I thought against them in the more in love. I fell with this man, even though he was not my type, and she said it only lasted about six months, but it was five months longer than it should have lasted. If I had just looked at the situation objectively, but this pressure kept me they're, so you're, saying Romeo and Juliet when it has been a fling, had demonic using the Capulet not hated each other, the exact
the impression them to stay away from each other Shakespeare Scholars pitch them at fifth. Ten and thirteen years old. That would have been puppy love without their parents. I love the story you, tell about the new coke in the old coke visa fees scarcity. There was a time when the Coca COLA companies simply decided to remove from the shelves their classic Coke formula, the thing that they had spent decades in decades, promoting and getting us associated with, and then they just supplanted it with,
this new cook formula, which their three years worth of taste test showed, was preferred by most of their customers. What they didn't recognize is taking away people's freedoms, they have something that was so positively associated with their histories and their childhoods was a big mistake, and there was this big revolution against it that ultimately forced coke to restore the old formula. Now
in their taste test data. They had a piece of evidence that should have shown them that this was the case. Some of the taste tests were done blind. You got about fifty five percent, preferring the new cope. There were others that were label. This is your traditional, and this is the new coke, and now you get another six percentage points favouring the new coke. How do you explain, then, that when you give people the new coke properly labelled, they were against it when cope, pull the old coke or mill and replaced it with an the one they couldn't get was the whole coke its scarcity. You want what you can't have. What do you think of companies that create an artificial scarcity, essentially by limiting the amount of production they engage in but say it's a teacher
Nigger, a luxury watch They could make a million a year. They choose instead to make ten thousand a year in charge hundred times what it might go for on the market. As a mass market item, do you think that's manipulation, a clever application of the scarcity lever, manipulation, they're, not pointing to something that is rare or unique and is dwindling. They are creating those circumstances. Just like my brother, created the situation with three people contending for the They incur. At the same time, when I was reading your chapter on scarcity, it made me wonder if it helps explain to some degree. Conspiracy theories, in other words, The information that conspiracy theorists it here too, isn't widely available, and there Therefore, I can imagine my appetite for it becomes that much more intense sounds right, because indeed,
were in possession of limited information and, as a consequence, feel that you have something that other people don't have, which of course enhances its value, but also you feel like now we're talking about the principle of unity. You have a calmer rivalry with those individuals all believe this here, twelve dna reading. Another passage from the new edition of influence the more. I learn about the scarcity principle, the more I have begun to notice its influence over a whole range of my own actions. I've been known to interrupt in interesting, face to face conversation to end through the ring of a collar in such a situation, the collar This is a compelling feature that my face to face partner does not contain.
Joe unavailability, if I don't take the call, I might miss it and the information it carries for good, never mind that the first conversation maybe highly engaging or important much more, that, I could expect of an average phone call with each unanswered ring Born interaction becomes less retrieval. For that reason, and for that moment I wanted more then? The other conversation, the sixth lever. You discuss is called commitment. Inconsistency. Now, when I you that, for some reason my mind turns to politics. So let me ask you this Donald Trump acquired. What strikes me as a tape and magnitude of influence that is perhaps without precedent, at least in our lifetime. What did he do who so differently and well. Well, if you remember
in his various rallies he would say. Turn the cameras around look at this audience. He was so savvy about the rule of social problem when people didn't know him very well- and now I'm gonna, give you a reason that is going to, I think, reveal my political views on this. Why have people stayed with Donald Trump over all these times, where there are consequential, missteps There is an old literature in persuasion, science and cognitive dissonance says: if people have made a choice that resulted in a negative, consequence the more negative, the consequence, the less likely they are to believe it was a mistake,
so what you just described in economic terms, would be mutually called. The sunk cost fellow see. How well does your version of that and the economists version of that intersect. It does intersect because of the principle of commitment inconsistency. Consistency is characteristic of a lot of strength, you say what you believe and you do. What you say, you don't come off as irresolute tour, wishy, washy or confused. The downside is, if you ve made a commitment Then you want to stay with it because of that initial action, even when the circumstances no longer warrant that choice. I am curious how the principle of commitment and consistency plays out in geopolitics. If you were called in
help the? U S refine its position in regard to China or IRAN, or one of its other rivals. What would you advise? I give you a couple of examples. The former egyptian President Anwar said DOT was a master negotiator, eat an under circumstances where he was objectively at a disadvantage, for example, when he was having to negotiate with Israel after the six day. War in which Israel was superior, what's Sudan would do, is give his opponent a reputation, Shouldn t live up to. He would say to the Israelis, I'm so glad that were able to negotiate on this and that you are my marketing partner, because everybody knows how important equanimity and fairness is to the jewish community, and they would then
we believe that way. This happened to me by the way what the previous book I wrote, called pre suasion, the first five thousand copies of the book were, printed poorly the pollination was wrong. My editor told me what happened and he said I hate when something like this happens too. Good I, like you, and you know what I heard myself say thing: it's. Ok, it's ok, the inner haven't everybody. Everybody became the good guy. My newspaper carry goes by my door every morning in his car and he throws didn't morning newspaper and seventy five percent of the time he gets it in the center of the driveway, and every year includes a little envelope around Christmas time, I'm supposed to put a check in there as a tip, which I always do, but this year after year,
read the research. I put a little note in the envelope. Thank you for being so conscientious in getting by newspaper. or in the center of the driveway, so it doesn't get wet from the watering systems on either side did that improves AIM Stephen one hundred percent in here now the book influence is one more example of the power of commitment and consistency in one study when six or two of person. Experimental juries were deciding on a close case hung juries. We're signify currently more frequent. If the jurors had to express their opinions with a view. the bull show of hands, rather than by secret ballot, once jury had stated their initial views. Publicly
they were reluctant to allow themselves to change publicly. Did you ever find yourself before person of a jury? Under these conditions, you could reduce the Escobar hung jury bite you using a secret rather than public balloting method. Ok, so you did he is the brand new chapter, the brand new lever in this? What led you to add it? It was the building evidence with it, behavioral science of the power of social identities to drive people's behaviour. The groups with they felt they shared an identity and the links to which people would go to promote and protect those within their weak groups. I could see the tribal. Is there was emerging in our society and it seemed to
me. Oh, I miss this one I had always thought of it as something that was an accelerator of the other principles. If you somebody inside your group gave you a scarcity I appeal for a social prove appeal at thirty you'd be none of this one stands alone. If your research has anything to say about family estrangement because- an astonishingly large number people have in a strange within their families. We often don't like our fellow family members, but we still feel a connection to them. We still feel bonded with them by virtue of the unity group that a family constitutes. Let's say I have a friend at work who is
Much more like me, we like the same author as we like the same musical artists. We like the same ethnic food, and I have a brother who is the opposite of me on all of those things and were out on a boat fishing and they for win and there's only one life preserver, there's no question who gets it my brother, so it's the different speeds. Queen me being able to say to my in group members. Euro Stephen is like us versus Stephen is one of us if I can say that all influence barriers come down for you inside. That group and here is one last passage from Robert chinese influence on the power of unity, and
United States? Citizens agreed to participate in a survey to a greater extent if it emanated from a home state University Amazon product buyers were more law, likely to follow the recommendation of a reviewer who live In the same state, people greater You overestimate the rule of their home states in U S history, reader a new story about a man Military fatality in Afghanistan became more opposed to the war there upon learning the fallen soldier was from. Our own state I bought. How do you think you did today persuading people to read your book? well, you know I don't know, I have to sample little trepidations about it, because the last time the book appeared was fourteen years ago
and I am concerned that this new set of insights and features people will say out. You know I have that book or I read that broker. I read about it and won't appreciate That is quite different. No is yours sharing your trepidation like that part of your attempt to influence. You know, I suppose it could be if in the process, I got people to say you know, I would feel the same way were alike in that That was Robert, Shall Dini, and this was the economics read your book club is book is called influence. The psychology of purse, region. We were discussing the new and expanded addition which has just been published by the way we have just started a separate podcast feed for the economic radio book Club, which includes all the episodes we published today and will include all future episodes. Most of your friends are,
but we're going to subscribe right away. Also, a lot of university professors. And other egg heads have already declared the Economics radio book club to be an excellent idea. You won't want to miss out on, but hurry. This offer won't last long, and we have next time on for economics, radio, We are more than one year into the great work from home experiment how'd, you like it so far. I hated is that a year reversal sentiment no its not. It was a story of being happy in working order. In some city, you see this change as a big opportunity. They offered ten thousand dollars to eat remote worker who move to Tulsa and stay there. Three year, its next time on the show until then take care of yourself and if you can someone else too.
For economics radio is produced by stature and ran, but radio, and it is part of the frequent hammocks radio network, which also includes new, stupid questions. People are mostly admire and sue dear breaks, the internet. We can be read radio at for economics, dot com. This episode was produced by Brent cats. Our staff also includes- I was incredible. Greg Ribbon, Joel Meyer, Tricia Benita Mark Mccluskey, exactly Kinsky married, Duke Rebecca Lee Douglas, Morgan Levy, immaterial lyric bout, its jasmine, cleaner and Jacob Clemente. Our theme song is MR fortune by the hitchhikers, the other music. For this. Episode was composed by Luis Gara, Michael reorder and Stephen Eric. You can get the entire archive of economic. radio on any podcast cast if you'd like to read a transcript or show notes, that's at freakin mix dot com, as always thanks from listening. This is
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Transcript generated on 2021-07-06.