We’ve curated a collection of Behavioural Design books. Selected from the studio’s bookshelf, they are well read and well used.
BOOKS TO READ
Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions by Dan Ariely
Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us by Daniel H Pink
Mistakes Were Made (But Not by Me) by Tavris & Aronson
The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg
Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman
1. Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions
by Dan Ariely
Why do our headaches persist after we take a one-cent aspirin but disappear when we take a fifty-cent aspirin? Why do we splurge on a lavish meal but cut coupons to save twenty-five cents on a can of soup?
When it comes to making decisions in our lives, we think we're making smart, rational choices. But are we?
New York Times bestseller, Dan Ariely refutes the common assumption that we behave in fundamentally rational ways. From drinking coffee to losing weight, from buying a car to choosing a romantic partner, we consistently overpay, underestimate, and procrastinate. Yet these misguided behaviors are neither random nor senseless. They're systematic and predictable—making us predictably irrational.
2. Thinking, Fast and Slow
by Daniel Kahneman
Why is there more chance we'll believe something if it's in a bold type face? Why are judges more likely to deny parole before lunch? Why do we assume a good-looking person will be more competent? The answer lies in the two ways we make choices: fast, intuitive thinking, and slow, rational thinking. This book reveals how our minds are tripped up by error and prejudice (even when we think we are being logical), and gives you practical techniques for slower, smarter thinking. It will enable to you make better decisions at work, at home, and in everything you do.
3. Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us
by Daniel H Pink
Forget everything you thought you knew about how to motivate people - at work, at school, at home. It is wrong. As Daniel H. Pink explains in his paradigm-shattering book Drive, the secret to high performance and satisfaction in today's world is the deeply human need to direct our own lives, to learn and create new things, and to do better by ourselves and the world.
Along the way, he takes us to companies that are enlisting new approaches to motivation, and introduces us to the scientists and entrepreneurs who are pointing a bold way forward.
4. The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business
by Charles Duhigg
We can always change. In The Power of Habit, award-winning New York Times business reporter Charles Duhigg translates cutting-edge behavioural science into practical self-improvement action, distilling advanced neuroscience into fascinating narratives of transformation.
Why can some people and companies change overnight, and some stay stuck in their old ruts? The answer lies deep in the human brain, and The Power of Habits reveals the secret pressure points that can change a life. From Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps to Martin Luther King Jr., from the CEO of Starbucks to the locker rooms of the NFL, Duhigg explores the incredible results of keystone habits, and how they can make all the difference between billions and millions, failure and success – or even life and death.
5. Mistakes Were Made (But Not by Me)
by Tavris & Aronson
When we make mistakes, cling to outdated attitudes, or mistreat other people, we must calm the cognitive dissonance that jars our feelings of self-worth. And so, unconsciously, we create fictions that absolve us of responsibility, restoring our belief that we are smart, moral, and right--a belief that often keeps us on a course that is dumb, immoral, and wrong. Backed by years of research, Mistakes Were Made (But Not by Me) offers a fascinating explanation of self-justification--how it works, the damage it can cause, and how we can overcome it. This updated edition features new examples and concludes with an extended discussion of how we can live with dissonance, learn from it, and perhaps, eventually, forgive ourselves.
Tools of the trade
Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion by Robert Cialdini
Nudge: Improving Decisions about Health, Wealth, and Happiness by Cass Sunstein & Richard Thaler
Contagious: Why Things Catch On by Jonah Berger
Switch: How To Change When Change Is Hard by Chip Heath & Dan Heath
Friction: The Untapped Force That Can Be Your Most Powerful Advantage by Roger Dooley
6. Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion
by Robert Cialdini
Influence, the classic book on persuasion, explains the psychology of why people say "yes"―and how to apply these understandings. Dr. Robert Cialdini is the seminal expert in the rapidly expanding field of influence and persuasion. His thirty-five years of rigorous, evidence-based research along with a three-year program of study on what moves people to change behavior has resulted in this highly acclaimed book.
You'll learn the six universal principles, how to use them to become a skilled persuader―and how to defend yourself against them. Perfect for people in all walks of life, the principles of Influence will move you toward profound personal change and act as a driving force for your success.
7. Nudge: Improving Decisions about Health, Wealth, and Happiness
by Cass Sunstein & Richard Thaler
Nudge is about choices - how we make them and how we can make better ones. Every day we make decisions: about the things that we buy or the meals we eat; about the investments we make or our children's health and education; even the causes that we champion or the planet itself. Unfortunately, we often choose poorly. We are all susceptible to biases that can lead us to make bad decisions. And, as Thaler and Sunstein show, no choice is ever presented to us in a neutral way. By knowing how people think, we can make it easier for them to choose what is best for them, their families and society. Using dozens of eye-opening examples and original research, the authors demonstrate how to nudge us in the right directions, without restricting our freedom of choice.
8. Contagious: Why Things Catch On
by Jonah Berger
What makes things popular? If you said advertising, think again. People don’t listen to advertisements, they listen to their peers. But why do people talk about certain products and ideas more than others? Why are some stories and rumours more infectious? And what makes online content go viral?
In Contagious, Berger reveals the secret science behind word-of-mouth and social transmission. Discover how six basic principles drive all sorts of things to become contagious, from consumer products and policy initiatives to workplace rumours and YouTube videos. Learn how a luxury steakhouse found popularity through the lowly cheesesteak, why anti-drug commercials might have actually increased drug use, and why more than 200 million consumers shared a video about one of the most seemingly boring products there is: a blender.
9. Switch: How To Change When Change Is Hard
by Chip Heath & Dan Heath
We all know that change is hard. It's unsettling, it's time-consuming, and all too often we give up at the first sign of a setback.
But why do we insist on seeing the obstacles rather than the goal? This is the question that bestselling authors Chip and Dan Heath tackle in their compelling and insightful new book. They argue that we need only understand how our minds function in order to unlock shortcuts to switches in behaviour. Illustrating their ideas with scientific studies and remarkable real-life turnarounds - from the secrets of successful marriage counselling to the pile of gloves that transformed one company's finances - the brothers Heath prove that deceptively simple methods can yield truly extraordinary results.
10. Friction: The Untapped Force That Can Be Your Most Powerful Advantage
by Roger Dooley
In today's high-speed, customer-empowered world, the levels of swiftness and efficiency of business transactions will determine ultimate success or failure. In this groundbreaking guide, Dooley helps you spot the inevitable points of friction in your organisation, and he provides the tools and insight you need to eliminate them. By truly understanding the impact friction can have, you’ll be able to establish positive habits and eliminate negative ones—all with the end result of building a company that’s the envy of your industry. Friction takes you step-by-step through the process of:
• Empowering frank conversations
• Guiding individual and team behaviours
• Getting ahead of friction
• Optimising the customer experience
• Building a frictionless corporate culture