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Switch: How to change things when change is hard
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Switch: How to change things when change is hard [Format Kindle]

Chip Heath , Dan Heath
4.5 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (4 commentaires client)

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Descriptions du produit


Chapter 1

The Three Surprises About Change

One Saturday in 2000, some unsuspecting moviegoers showed up at a suburban theater in Chicago to catch a 1:05 p.m. matinee of Mel Gibson's action flick Payback. They were handed a soft drink and a free bucket of popcorn and were asked to stick around after the movie to answer a few questions about the concession stand. These movie fans were unwitting participants in a study of irrational eating behavior.

There was something unusual about the popcorn they received. It was wretched. In fact, it had been carefully engineered to be wretched. It had been popped five days earlier and was so stale that it squeaked when you ate it. One moviegoer later compared it to Styrofoam packing peanuts, and two others, forgetting that they'd received the popcorn for free, demanded their money back.

Some of them got their free popcorn in a medium-size bucket,and others got a large bucket - the sort of huge tub that looks like it might once have been an above-ground swimming pool. Every person got a bucket so there’d be no need to share. The researchers responsible for the study were interested in a simple question: Would the people with bigger buckets eat more?

Both buckets were so big that none of the moviegoers could finish their individual portions. So the actual research question was a bit more specific: Would somebody with a larger inexhaustible supply of popcorn eat more than someone with a smaller inexhaustible supply?

The sneaky researchers weighed the buckets before and after the movie, so they were able to measure precisely how much popcorn each person ate. The results were stunning: People with the large buckets ate 53 percent more popcorn than people with the medium size. That's the equivalent of 173 more calories and approximately 21 extra hand-dips into the bucket.

Brian Wansink, the author of the study, runs the Food and Brand Lab at Cornell University, and he described the results in his book Mindless Eating: "We've run other popcorn studies, and the results were always the same, however we tweaked the details. It didn't matter if our moviegoers were in Pennsylvania, Illinois, or Iowa, and it didn't matter what kind of movie was showing; all of our popcorn studies led to the same conclusion. People eat more when you give them a bigger container. Period."

No other theory explains the behavior. These people weren't eating for pleasure. (The popcorn was so stale it squeaked!) They weren't driven by a desire to finish their portion. (Both buckets were too big to finish.) It didn't matter whether they were hungry or full. The equation is unyielding: Bigger container = more eating.

Best of all, people refused to believe the results. After the movie, the researchers told the moviegoers about the two bucket sizes and the findings of their past research. The researchers asked, Do you think you ate more because of the larger size? The majority scoffed at the idea, saying, "Things like that don't trick me," or, "I'm pretty good at knowing when I'm full."


Imagine that someone showed you the data from the popcorn-eating study but didn't mention the bucket sizes. On your data summary, you could quickly scan the results and see how much popcorn different people ate—some people ate a little, some ate a lot, and some seemed to be testing the physical limits of the human stomach. Armed with a data set like that, you would find it easy to jump to conclusions. Some people are Reasonable Snackers, and others are Big Gluttons.

A public-health expert, studying that data alongside you, would likely get very worried about the Gluttons. We need to motivate these people to adopt healthier snacking behaviors! Let's find ways to show them the health hazards of eating so much!

But wait a second. If you want people to eat less popcorn, the solution is pretty simple: Give them smaller buckets. You don’t have to worry about their knowledge or their attitudes.

You can see how easy it would be to turn an easy change problem (shrinking people's buckets) into a hard change problem (convincing people to think differently). And that's the first surprise about change: What looks like a people problem is often a situation problem.

This is a book to help you change things. We consider change at every level - individual, organizational, and societal. Maybe you want to help your brother beat his gambling addiction. Maybe you need your team at work to act more frugally because of market conditions. Maybe you wish more of your neighbors would bike to work.

Usually these topics are treated separately - there is "change management" advice for executives and "self-help" advice for individuals and "change the world" advice for activists. That's a shame, because all change efforts have something in common: For anything to change, someone has to start acting differently. Your brother has got to stay out of the casino; your employees have got to start booking coach fares. Ultimately, all change efforts boil down to the same mission: Can you get people to start behaving in a new way?

We know what you're thinking - people resist change. But it's not quite that easy. Babies are born every day to parents who, inexplicably, welcome the change. Think about the sheer magnitude of that change! Would anyone agree to work for a boss who'd wake you up twice a night, screaming, for trivial administrative duties? (And what if, every time you wore a new piece of clothing, the boss spit up on it?) Yet people don't resist this massive change - they volunteer for it.

In our lives, we embrace lots of big changes - not only babies, but marriages and new homes and new technologies and new job duties. Meanwhile, other behaviors are maddeningly intractable. Smokers keep smoking and kids grow fatter and your husband can't ever seem to get his dirty shirts into a hamper.

So there are hard changes and easy changes. What distinguishes one from the other? In this book, we argue that successful changes share a common pattern. They require the leader of the change to do three things at once. We've already mentioned one of those three things: To change someone's behavior, you've got to change that person's situation.

The situation isn't the whole game, of course. You can send an alcoholic to rehab, where the new environment will help him go dry. But what happens when he leaves and loses that influence? You might see a boost in productivity from your sales reps when the sales manager shadows them, but what happens afterward when the situation returns to normal? For individuals’ behavior to change, you've got to influence not only their environment but their hearts and minds.

The problem is this: Often the heart and mind disagree. Fervently.

Consider the Clocky, an alarm clock invented by an MIT student, Gauri Nanda. It's no ordinary alarm clock - it has wheels. You set it at night, and in the morning when the alarm goes off, it rolls off your nightstand and scurries around the room, forcing you to chase it down. Picture the scene: You're crawling around the bedroom in your underwear, stalking and cursing a runaway clock.

Clocky ensures that you won't snooze-button your way to disaster. And apparently that's a common fear, since about 35,000 units were purchased, at $50 each, in Clocky's first two years on the market (despite minimal marketing).

The success of this invention reveals a lot about human psychology. What it shows, fundamentally, is that we are schizophrenic. Part of us - our rational side - wants to get up at 5:45 a.m., allowing ourselves plenty of time for a quick jog before we leave for the office. The other part of us - the emotional side - wakes up in the darkness of the early morning, snoozing inside a warm cocoon of sheets and blankets, and wants nothing in the world so much as a few more minutes of sleep. If, like us, your emotional side tends to win these internal debates, then you might be a potential Clocky customer. The beauty of the device is that it allows your rational side to outsmart your emotional side. It's simply impossible to stay cuddled up under the covers when a rogue alarm clock is rolling around your room.

Let's be blunt here: Clocky is not a product for a sane species. If Spock wants to get up at 5:45 a.m., he'll just get up. No drama required.

Our built-in schizophrenia is a deeply weird thing, but we don't think much about it because we're so used to it. When we kick off a new diet, we toss the Cheetos and Oreos out of the pantry, because our rational side knows that when our emotional side gets a craving, there's no hope of self-control. The only option is to remove the temptation altogether. (For the record, some MIT student will make a fortune designing Cheetos that scurry away from people when they're on a diet.)

The unavoidable conclusion is this: Your brain isn't of one mind.

The conventional wisdom in psychology, in fact, is that the brain has two independent systems at work at all times. First, there's what we called the emotional side. It's the part of you that is instinctive, that feels pain and pleasure. Second, there's the rational side, also known as the reflective or conscious system. It's the part of you that deliberates and analyzes and looks into the future.

In the past few decades, psychologists have learned a lot about these two systems, but of course mankind has always been aware of the tension. Plato said that in our heads we have a rational charioteer who has to rein in an unruly horse that "barely yields to horsewhip and goad combined." Freud wrote about the selfish id and the conscientious superego (and also about the ego, which mediates between them). More recently, behavioral economists dubbed the two systems the Planner and the Doer.

But, to us, the duo's tension is captured best by an analogy used by University of Virginia psychologist Jonathan Haidt in his wonderful book The Happiness Hypothesis. Haidt says...

Revue de presse

"A fantastic book" (Wired)

"Witty and instructive" (Wall Street Journal)

"Switch is likely to prove invaluable to anyone wanting to make long-lasting change a reality" (BBC Focus)

"Whether you're a manager, a parent or a civic leader, getting people to change can be tricky business. In Switch, brothers Chip and Dan Heath - authors of the best-selling Made to Stick - survey efforts to shape human behaviour in search of what works. Even when change isn't easy, it's often worth making" (Time)

"A must-read" (Forbes)

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Commentaires client les plus utiles
10 internautes sur 11 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Le changement naturellement 6 mars 2010
Par Romaric
Motivé notre éléphant ou le rendre apte au changement plus facilement, ce sont les frères Heath qui nous démontrent au cours d'expériences et de faits variés pourquoi nous sommes si peu enclins au changement et comment y remédier à travers une structure concise.
Par ex, trouver l'exception à la règle, le 1% qui marche dans une situation alors que le reste des 99 échouent, et reproduire ce système. D'ailleurs, une notion fondamentale qu'ils n'ont pas oublié de souligner est qu'un problème lié à l'individu est avant tout un problème lié à la situation de ce dernier, càd, le système dans lequel il évolue, changer ce système s'avère donc le bon choix (ie, faire un système dans lequel on rend les erreurs impossibles à produire au lieu de blâmer la personne responsable de l'erreur)

L'ouvrage ne se borne pas aux changements, les méthodes peuvent aussi être utilisées pour trouver des solutions natives aux problèmes. C'est d'ailleurs, un excellent moyen contre les réunions ennuyeuses remplies, de feuilles Excel, de données d'analyses, de graphiques à ne plus savoir où en donner la tête considérés comme TBU, True But Useless qui n'apportent rien à la décision au final.
Divers domaines y sont passés (consommation, social, comportemental, marketing, personnel') pour démontrer la structure à adopter pour changer.
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1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 well worth the read 11 avril 2011
Of many books on change management, I liked this one for its effective combination of theory and practical suggestions/case studies. As a development professional, recruiting change agents is a major part of my work, and this book provided some helpful pointers for understanding and influencing positive behaviours.

Just wish I could get a Kindle version, this is a book I want to reread !
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4.0 étoiles sur 5 Pratique 2 avril 2014
Format:Broché|Achat authentifié par Amazon
Pas de grande théorie, que des cas pratiques. Il peut aider grandement dans les changements à (s') apporter au jour le jour.
Je peux reprocher ceci - il ne traite que de cas très impressionnants.
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5.0 étoiles sur 5 Great book ! 12 septembre 2012
Par misstdm
Format:Broché|Achat authentifié par Amazon
How to understand easily why it is hard to change things and how it is possible to change things. Fascinating exemples, great learnings. I higly recommend it.
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) 4.6 étoiles sur 5  497 commentaires
432 internautes sur 473 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Several sticky insights 16 février 2010
Par Robert Morris - Publié sur
Chip and Dan Heath have once again summoned a lively writing style to present a series of compelling insights that make this book even more interesting as well as more valuable than its predecessor, Made to Stick. As they explain in the first chapter, "In this book, we argue that successful changes share a common pattern. They require the leader of change to do three things at once: To change someone's behavior, you've got to change that person's situation...[to cope with the fact that change] is hard because people wear themselves out. And that's the second surprise about change: What looks like laziness is often exhaustion...If you want people to change, you must provide crystal clear direction [because what] looks like resistance is often a lack of clarity." Throughout, the Heaths work within a narrative, best viewed as a "three-part framework," as they provide countless real-world (as opposed to hypothetical or theoretical] examples and - to their great credit - also provide a context or frame-of-reference for each.

Moreover, the Heaths invoke a few extended metaphors. The most important of these are the Rider (i.e. our rational side), the Elephant, (i.e. our emotional and instinctive side) and the Path (i.e. the surrounding environment in which change initiatives will be conducted). The challenge is to direct the Rider, motivate the Elephant, and shape the Path to make change more likely, "no matter what's happening with the Rider and Elephant...If you can do all three at once, dramatic change can happen even if you don't have lots of power or resources behind you."

Donald Berwick offers an excellent case in point. In 2004, in his position as a doctor and the CEO of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI), he had developed some ideas as to "how to save lives - massive numbers of lives" and his ideas were so well-supported by research that they were indisputable and yet "little was happening" until he spoke at a professional meeting and proposed six very specific interventions to save lives. Within two months, more than 1,000 hospitals had signed up. Eighteen months later, to the day (June 14, 2006) he had previously announced that he'd promised to return, he announced the results: "Hospitals enrolled in the 100,000 Lives Campaign have collectively prevented an estimated 122,300 avoidable deaths and, as importantly, have begun to institutionalize new standards of care that will continue to save lives and improve health outcomes into the future." He had directed his audience's Riders (i.e. hospital administrators), he had motivated his audience's Elephants by making them feel the compelling need for change, and he had shaped the Path by making it easier for the hospitals to embrace the change. The Heaths offer more than a dozen other prime examples (e.g. Jerry Sternin in Vietnam, the Five-Minute Room Rescue, "Fataki" in Tanzania) that also demonstrate how the same three-part framework resulted in the achievement of major changes elsewhere despite great difficulty.

Near the end of the book, the Heaths summarize the key points they have so thoroughly made while explaining to their reader how to make a switch. "For things to change, somebody somewhere has to start acting differently. Maybe it's you, maybe it's your team. Picture the person (or people). Each has an emotional Elephant side and a rational Rider side. You've got to reach both. And you've also got to clear the way for them to succeed." By now, the Heaths have explained how others have directed the Rider, motivated the Elephant, and shaped the Path. They conclude their book with a Q&A section during which they advise how to resolve twelve problems that people most often encounter as they fight for change. They suggest, and I agree, that this advice "won't make sense to anybody who hasn't read the book." The same can probably be said about much of what I have shared in this review.

Although, in my opinion, this is one of the most important business books published during the last several years, no commentary such as mine can do full justice to it. It simply must be read and read carefully, preferably then re-read carefully. Otherwise, it makes no sense to visit [...] to obtain additional information and assistance.

I offer my congratulations to Chip and Dan Heath on a brilliant achievement. Bravo!
149 internautes sur 163 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Switching "On" Your Emotional Intelligence 23 décembre 2010
Par Bob Hayden - Publié sur
Switch is a compelling, story-driven narrative the Heaths use to bring together decades of counterintuitive research in psychology, sociology, and other fields to shed new light on how we can engage our emotions and reason to create real change.

The book is arranged around an analogy that illustrates the crux of emotional intelligence: when making a decision we are typically torn between our rational, logical reasons and our emotional, intuitive feelings. Chip and Dan ask us to imagine an Elephant and its Rider (the mahout). The Rider represents the rational and logical. Tell the Rider what to do, provide a good argument and the Rider will do it. The Elephant, on the other hand, represents our emotions, our gut response. If the Rider can direct the Elephant down a well-prepared path then there is a good chance for change. Otherwise, the massive elephant is bound to win.

The book is structured into three sections, each one suggesting specific behaviors you can follow:

I. Direct the Rider:
- Find the bright spots
- Script the critical moves
- Point to the destination

II. Motivate the Elephant:
- Find the feeling
- Shrink the Change;
- Grow your people

III. Shape the Path:
- Tweak the environment
- Build habits
- Rally the herd

Another must read on the topic is Emotional Intelligence 2.0
110 internautes sur 121 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 On the whole, a worthwhile, rewarding read... 17 avril 2010
Par Cheese Steak Jimmy - Publié sur
"Switch" oscillates between the citation of psychological research and the slightly-suspect relaying of 'inspirational anecdotes' (as is de rigeur for this genre), but is, on the whole, a worthwhile read. Coming across as a self-help version of Nudge, the authors wield an array of techniques to help people create change in their lives as painlessly as possible. In doing so, they indirectly provide an evidential basis for David Allen's "Next Action" mantra, as suggested in Getting Things Done, but their focus is neither on the "nuts and bolts" of organisational management (which can lead to meta-productivity fetishism, as many GTD converts are prone to), nor on the sort of "flying with the eagles" nonsense that keeps Anthony Robbins in a mansion in Hawaii. Instead, the authors try and strike a balance between social psychology and "change your life" blue sky thinking. For the most part, they succeed admirably, and their approach ends up leading them to more sensible suggestions than the interesting -but wacky- 59 Seconds which itself purports to be based on hard science (or, at least, as "hard science" as psychological research can be). For those who like their self help rooted strongly in scientific research, I would probably recommend this alongside Brain Rules, but own it's own, Switch is still a worthwhile addition to the burgeoning genre of self-help-based-on-academic-research genre.
116 internautes sur 132 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
2.0 étoiles sur 5 Disappointing 29 août 2011
Par Martha E. Pollack - Publié sur
Like many universities, mine is in the midst of implementing some major changes to the way we do business, with the goal of becoming more efficient and decreasing operating costs. Recently, Chip Heath and Dan Heath's book "Switch" was provided to a number of people on campus who have responsibility for some aspects of these changes. Although I generally find business books to be disappointing at best, and irritating at worst, I started this one optimistic that it would be different. Alas, that optimism waned by the second chapter, and was completely destroyed by the time I finished the book.

"Switch" suffers from the three main problems that I've found in nearly all popular business books. First, it presents claims without sufficient justification. This book focuses on techniques to facilitate change in organizations and individuals, and while it occasionally cites interesting work in cognitive and social psychology that may be relevant to the techniques suggested, for the most part the justification for the techniques is anecdotal: technique X worked at company Y in particular instance Z, and so it's obviously a valid technique that's always applicable. There's no attempt at any sort of rigorous scientific testing of such a claim. For example, in chapter 2, the Heath brothers claim that you cannot focus on why a proposed change is failing to take hold, but must instead "find the bright spots," i.e., identify the pockets where it is working, figure out why it works there, and then try to emulate the small successes elsewhere. They describe several case studies where this approach has led to successful change, including a project to improve childhood nutrition in Vietnam, and an intervention with a misbehaving ninth grader. Finding the brights spots is surely a good thing to do, but the hypothesis that it is always the best approach, that it will always trump analysis and correction of failure, is simply not sufficiently backed up. How do we know that there weren't particular features of the Vietman project or particular aspects of the ninth-grader's personality that made one approach more effective here than others? We don't. Anyone trained in the proper use of the scientific method will want to scream at instance after instance of this type of claim without support.

The second problem with "Switch" is that it uses the overly cutesy language that is so common to this genre of books. At a high level, the book's central claim is that effective change requires three things: you need to engage the rational, data-driven perspective of the people who have to make the change; you also need to make sure that they also have an emotional stake in the change; and you need to make the change process as easy as possible for them by manipulating the environment. To describe this triad of requirements, the Heath brothers make use of a metaphorical rider (the rational perspective) on an elephant (the emotional component--it's much stronger, and so gets the elephant label), moving down a path (the change context). They then use and use and re-use and re-use again this metaphor in paragraph after paragraph, until their message is almost drowned out by the infantilizing language. This use of cute language pervades the book, even beyond the rider-elephant-path triad. For example, near the end of the book, where they're describing how to keep change momentum going, they talk about positive reinforcement, and provide the example of a monkey trainer who rewards her charge with bits of mango for each small action she performs correctly. A page or two later, they proclaim "If you want your boss or your team to change, you better get a little less stingy with the mango." C'mon!

Finally, one has the sense that the book is about twice as long as it needed to be to convey its key points.

All that said, "Switch" contains some reasonable, if sometimes common-sense, approaches to effecting change. To summarize, and paraphrase heavily, their main points:

Engage the rational mind by (1) seeking out examples of where change is working and emulating those successes in other quarters; (2) providing specific, well-defined statements of the initial steps that need to be taken in the change process; (3) clearly identifying the intended end-state and the reasons that that end-state is valuable.

Engage the emotions by (1) instilling a positive disposition in the people who must implement the changes: focus on hope and optimism, not fear; (2) "shrinking the change", i.e., show people that they're already partway to the goal; (3) capitalizing on people's sense of identity by showing them how certain behaviors align with the kind of person they naturally want to be; and (4) blocking the common belief that people are defined by inherent personality characteristics, and instead affirming that people can change and grow.

Facilitate the change by (1) tweaking the environment so that the newly desired behavior is inevitable, or at least easy; (2) similarly, creating a situation in which good habits are natural (and making use of one interesting approach to this, namely preloading decisions, i.e., setting up triggers for desired actions);and (3) using peer pressure.

These are all reasonable strategies, and having them in one's change-management arsenal is doubtless a good thing. But surely there is a way to present them in less than 265 pages, without using silly, repetitive language, and without claiming that they are the only effective ways to create change.
115 internautes sur 133 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Keys for making change happen, from the grassroots on up 16 février 2010
Par Amy Tiemann - Publié sur
I am a big fan of the Heath brothers' first book Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die and I am happy to report that they have stepped up to the plate and hit another home run. As a writer and someone who works for social change, I found "Switch" to be even more engaging and applicable to my own work.

In "Switch," the Heaths once again take the kernel of a good idea originated by someone else and build an expansive original work around it. In "Made to Stick" that kernel was Malcolm Gladwell's concept of "stickiness," what makes ideas memorable. In "Switch" the core is psychologist and The Happiness Hypothesis author Jonathan Haidt's analogy for the mind: that the emotional side of our mind is like a headstrong Elephant, and the rational side of our mind is the guiding Rider. The Rider holds the reins and seems to be the leader, but we all know what it's like for an emotional Elephant to overpower a rational Rider. (For example, this is why many of us would say that a pint of Ben & Jerry's ice cream should be labeled one serving and not four. Once a worked up Elephant digs in, the Rider has a hard time reining her in. Um, speaking hypothetically, of course.)

Add in the third element to this framework, the Path, and you have three elements that can be worked on to address change. "Switch" addresses each of these elements in detail; Directing the Rider, Motivating the Elephant, and Shaping the Path, bringing in research-tested solutions and real-world success stories. What I liked best was the simplicity of many of the examples. To encourage people to "eat healthier," an initiative that could go in so many directions, rather than doing something complicated like following an illogically-designed government "Food Pyramid," a West Virginia initiative instead encouraged people to take one step, to buy 1% or skim milk. That is simple, and creates change at the level of purchasing behavior rather than altering drinking or eating behavior. (If the Ben & Jerry's isn't in the freezer in the first place, the Rider doesn't have to worry about controlling the Elephant.) And by narrowing the change down to one action, that eliminated choice paralysis and ambiguity that arise with more complicated directives.

"Switch" is a book for anyone from the grassroots, to cubicle nation, to CEOs. Most of the examples consciously focus on people who needed to effect significant change with little power and few resources available to them. How could a low-level NGO employee make a difference in alleviating the malnourishment of Vietnamese children, in only six months? By finding "bright spots," identifying children who were thriving, finding out what their mothers were doing differently, and spreading that knowledge to other families. Stories like this are both inspiring and practical for all of us. This is really what I appreciated most about "Switch." I found myself taking notes that were not only about the book itself, but about how I could apply this knowledge to challenges I am working on. The Elephant-Rider-Path metaphor helped me see my own work in a new light. What more can a reader ask for?
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Big problems are rarely solved with commensurately big solutions. Instead, they are most often solved by a sequence of small solutions, sometimes over weeks, sometimes over decades. &quote;
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