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Dig the well before you get thirsty? Yeah, right.

“Don't wait until you’re thirsty to dig a well” implored Chinese philosopher Zhu Xi over 800 years ago.

In other words, you need to put plans in place today for things that may happen tomorrow.

But how many of us do that? How realistic is it when you are mired in the day-to-day?

 

Thirst drives urgency


I’ve seen variants of this quote being spruiked by futurists and strategists. Most commonly, “dig the well before you get thirsty!”

Some organisations...

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Three hard truths about customer behaviour

 

There are three hard truths about your customer.

  1. They write the script
  2. They are the hero of their story, and
  3. They run on batteries

The accompanying article is available on my blog archive: https://blogbriwilliams.wordpress.com/2018/08/03/three-truths-about-people/

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The problem of exceptionalism

covid exceptionalism Aug 06, 2020

This image just about sums up human behaviour, doesn't it?  

Image via @CorkCoypu

I'm writing to you from the locked-down city of Melbourne. A few weeks ago it seemed we were on top of Covid-19 but in a blink we find ourselves under Stage 4 restrictions. An 8pm-5am curfew, a 5 kilometre boundary in which we can shop - but only for essentials - remote schooling and limits on outdoor exercise.

It feels like the whole class got 6 more weeks of detention because some naughty kids...

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6 cognitive biases that get people to buy online

6 cognitive biases that influence online shopping

Google's consumer insights team wanted to "understand how consumers make decisions in an online environment of abundant choice and limitless information."

They found that "people deal with scale and complexity by using cognitive biases encoded deep in their psychology."

As consumers cycle through exploration and evaluation phases of their decision, they rely on the following six cognitive biases:

  1. Category heuristics -...
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It's natural, but is it acceptable?

Uncategorized Jul 21, 2020

I’ve found myself talking a lot about in-group bias recently.

It's our tendency to favour our group over others. 
 
What’s our group? It could be our family, footy team, hair colour, ethnicity, choice of car, nationality, or even, as I have witnessed during Melbourne’s second lockdown, suburb.
 
We naturally sift and sort people into categories so we can navigate the world, separating “us” and “them” as we go. From an evolutionary...

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Let's talk behavioural models

bmap comb east mindspace Jul 08, 2020
 

Does the world really need another behavioural framework? 

I wrestled with this as I developed and shared my model for behaviour change.

How is it different? Why should people bother? 

And the thought came screaming back as I presented at Nudgestock a few weeks ago. A lot of concepts and approaches were thrown around over 14 hours. It was overwhelming. 

So here's what I thought I'd do.

First, sketch a landscape of the more commonly known behavioural...

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Why we're all a bit like Trump

“When you do testing to that extent, you are going to find more people, you will find more cases. So I said slow the testing down.”

US President Donald Trump’s statement about slowing COVID-19 testing was so appalling that it rightfully made headlines around the world.

For a world leader to so flagrantly place vanity above the health of his citizens was truly gobsmacking.

But there’s a second reason it was so awful.

Inadvertently or by design, Trump made blatant what...

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Nudgestock Global 2020

 

I was excited to present at the world's biggest and best festival of behavioural science, created by Ogilvy.

It kicked off in Sydney and travelled around the globe, finishing in New York 14 hours later.

Here's my 'tight ten' in which I explain my behaviour change model.

 

What now?

  • Read a quick overview of my Behaviour Change Model here.
  • Clarify your very own behavioural challenge with my free Behavioural Analysis tool.
  • Get behavioural tips and ideas by subscribing...
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Nanette-ing your approach to influence

Much of the power of Hannah Gadsby’s hit show “Nanette” was her deconstruction of comedic performance, lifting the veil and stepping us through the set-up, tension and release.

The comedian’s role, Gadsby shared, is to deliberately create tension so they can then relieve us of it.

That’s your role too, by the way, if you are interested in gaining traction for your ideas or winning new business. Whether you are creating a PowerPoint presentation, writing a tender...

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When it comes to habits, should you moderate or eliminate?

habits moderation May 28, 2020

For some, moderation works. My mother, for example, can leave food on her plate and limit herself to two squares of chocolate a night.

For others, elimination is better. I am prone to eating everything on my plate and gobbling two ROWS of chocolate. I am therefore better to serve smaller meals on smaller plates, eliminating the decision whether and how much to leave. Eliminating chocolate from the house also works best for me.

Whether you are wired to moderate or eliminate will have a large...

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