This is the blog archive of Bri Williams. You can find articles from 2020 onward at https://www.briwilliams.com/
360 degree BE Carrot Rewards, a mobile app that spruiked its use of behavioural economics (BE) to engage 1.1 million users, filed for bankruptcy this year after failing to find an investor. Which got me thinking: are businesses embedding BE in product design but overlooking its use to influence those who pay the bills? BE … Continue reading Think bigger →
Do you ever have the urge to do the opposite of what is being suggested, even when it’s against your self-interest? You might be experiencing reactance; our tendency to bristle against attempts to constrain our freedom. Reactance means we have to be very careful when influencing others, whether that means customers, the public or even our … Continue reading Don’t tell me what to do (if you want me to do it) →
Sometimes we underestimate our adaptability. We think we’re locked into our habits and it takes a Herculean effort to change our behaviour. And to a degree that’s true. Habits can be difficult to break and buggers to make (which is why I wrote a book called The How of Habits). But many of us are going … Continue reading Bending time to advantage →
To customers you are guilty until proven innocent There was a judge in the US who, at the start of every trial, would step out from behind the bench, approach the defendant and shake their hand. “I have just shaken the hand of an innocent person,” he would proclaim. Why did he bother? The justice … Continue reading Guilty until proven innocent →
I always find myself amused when I walk past this driveway. I call it the driveway to nowhere, because standing right in front of that shiny new slab of concrete is an old tree trunk. Could there by a more apt metaphor for how business or personal projects usually go? We get excited, spend money … Continue reading Pushing past the lull →
Imagine you’ve been asked to sell new software to existing clients. This happened to a friend of mine recently. The plan was to offer the software on a trial basis and then convince clients to pay $2000 a month ongoing. The plan was doomed. Problem 1. No frame of reference My friend’s clients had no … Continue reading Saving a doomed product rollout →
I learnt a great deal from my 15 years in the corporate sector, including how incompetence is condoned. Like teachers who pass ‘problem’ children on to the next grade, workplaces are rife with incompetent staff who float through the organisation; Dimwit’s who outlast and outplay their more competent colleagues. If you are one of those … Continue reading How to survive an incompetent leader →
You’ve probably heard people say the best predictor of future behaviour is past behaviour. But is this true, and what does it actually mean? Let’s start with people’s tendency towards routine. Most of us are creatures of habit because that’s how our brain finds relief from the daily deluge of decision-making. Having a routine to follow … Continue reading Why past behaviour is not really the best predictor of future behaviour →
Do you know how a toilet works? I’m sure you do. But what if I asked that you explain it to me, in detail? Feeling less confident? The Illusion of Explanatory Depth A while ago I wrote about the Simplification Paradox. The paradox is people don’t value something if it is simple, but can’t use it … Continue reading How the illusion of explanatory depth impacts success →
Having working with hundreds of people over the eight years since I founded People Patterns I have observed two distinct approaches to new information or techniques. According to Regulatory Fit Theory (RFT), some people are motivated by a prevention focus where they are attracted to resolving a perceived gap in their business. These clients tend to feel … Continue reading Frame the gain or is loss the boss? The nuance of prevention vs promotion focus →
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