Persuasion, Motivation, and Behavior: The Science of When and Why the Rules Don't (always) Work
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Persuasion, Motivation, and Behavior: The Science of When and Why the Rules Don't (always) Work

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From GSummit 2014, in San Francisco ...

From GSummit 2014, in San Francisco

Science provides us with a number of general principles or rules of persuasion, motivation, and human behavior that tend to hold true for most people. For example, we know that people are more easily persuaded when we trigger an emotional response. Or if we reward a behavior, it is more likely to be repeated—and conversely, if we punish a behavior, it is less likely to be repeated. Or just the very basic principle that people tend to seek pleasure and avoid pain.

These shortcuts, or heuristics, are useful, and often, they work well. But for every rule there is at least one very important exception; times and situations in which people act in unexpected and counter-intuitive ways, the complete opposite of what you predicted. Statistically speaking, paying most attention to group behavior is fine. But sometimes the outliers are telling us something really important about the underlying motivations or characteristics of a subset of our audience, and sometimes not reaching that subset of people, or understanding what causes their behavior, carries a high cost.

I will be discussing three very different, and very critical, instances of ‘outlier behavior’ –explaining why they defy the norm, how you can identify these situations from the beginning, and some alternate strategies that can work with these outlier groups or conditions. Finally, I will talk about motivation types in the broader sense—those who are most and least likely to respond to incentives, why punishment doesn’t work on some people, and the difference between Happiness and Meaning as driving forces behind individual behavior.

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Persuasion, Motivation, and Behavior: The Science of When and Why the Rules Don't (always) Work Persuasion, Motivation, and Behavior: The Science of When and Why the Rules Don't (always) Work Presentation Transcript

  • Andrea Kuszewski @AndreaKuszewski The Science of When andWhy the Rules Don’t (always)Work June 12th, 2014 Persuasion, Motivation, & Behavior
  • The Science of Behavior Principles of Human Behavior Identity/Ideology Context/Environment Personality = =B
  • The Science of Behavior Ingroup/Outgroup Identity (ideology)
  • The Science of Behavior = Ingroup/Outgroup Identity (ideology) BX
  • The Science of Behavior Cognitive Dissonance When we feel our identity is being threatened by the outside world, we are strongly motivated to resolve that. Challenging a strongly-held belief is a threat to our identity .... especially when challenged by the OUTGROUP. Result? Cling to false beliefs eventighter Backfire Effect
  • The Science of Behavior
  • The Science of Behavior Context or Environment
  • The Science of Behavior = = Context or Environment B BX
  • The Science of Behavior Intrinsic vs Extrinsic Motivation Intrinsic Like Passion Self-Growth Fulfillment Meaning/Purpose Incentives Rewards Grades/Ratings Threats of Punishment Extrinsic Internal motivation to act = Always present Long-lasting, sustainable over time Short-term solution Comes from outside individual = May go away at any time
  • The Science of Behavior Incentivizing Creativity
  • The Science of Behavior Incentivizing Creativity Financial incentives REDUCE creative output Extrinsic rewards reduce intrinsic value
  • The Science of Behavior Incentivizing Creativity Financial incentives REDUCE creative output Extrinsic rewards reduce intrinsic value Best way to increase creative output: Autonomy
  • The Science of Behavior Incentivizing Creativity Financial incentives REDUCE creative output Extrinsic rewards reduce intrinsic value Best way to increase creative output: Autonomy How to incentivize? Let creativity happen!
  • The Science of Behavior It’s hard!
  • The Science of Behavior Individual Differences (personality)
  • The Science of Behavior “People tend to seek pleasure and avoid pain.” General Principle of Behaviorism
  • The Science of Behavior ???= Individual Differences (personality) B
  • The Science of Behavior Approach vs Avoidance (BIS/BAS) Jeffrey Alan Gray: Biopsychological Theory of Psychology BAS: Behavioral Activation System BIS: Behavioral Inhibition System * sensitive to punishment * sensitive to reward Activated by threat and Avoidance Motivation Behavior that brings a person closer to some reinforcer; Approach Motivation
  • The Science of Behavior Approach vs Avoidance (BIS/BAS) Jeffrey Alan Gray: Biopsychological Theory of Psychology BAS: Behavioral Activation System BIS: Behavioral Inhibition System Avoidance Approach Pursue and achieve goals Positive emotions (elation, happiness, hope) Dopamine!! Avoid negative events Negative emotions (fear, anxiety, boredom, frustration, sadness)
  • The Science of Behavior Does Punishment Work? -Short-term solution -Threats of punishment increase the INTRINSIC value of the unwanted behavior
  • The Science of Behavior Does Punishment Work? -Short-term solution -Threats of punishment increase the INTRINSIC value of the unwanted behavior -Once you remove the threat, person may be more likely to engage in unwanted behavior
  • The Science of Behavior Does Punishment Work? -Short-term solution -Threats of punishment increase the INTRINSIC value of the unwanted behavior -Once you remove the threat, person may be more likely to engage in unwanted behavior -Activates the BIS (Avoidance) = STRESS, ANXIETY, & BAD FEELINGS
  • The Science of Behavior Does Punishment Work? -Short-term solution -Threats of punishment increase the INTRINSIC value of the unwanted behavior -Once you remove the threat, person may be more likely to engage in unwanted behavior -Activates the BIS (Avoidance) = STRESS, ANXIETY, & BAD FEELINGS AND.... in that stubborn cohort, doesn’t work AT ALL!
  • The Science of Behavior Does Punishment Work? -Short-term solution -Threats of punishment increase the INTRINSIC value of the unwanted behavior -Once you remove the threat, person may be more likely to engage in unwanted behavior -Activates the BIS (Avoidance) = STRESS, ANXIETY, & BAD FEELINGS AND.... in that stubborn cohort, doesn’t work AT ALL!
  • The Science of Behavior Happiness Meaningor
  • The Science of Behavior Meaning vs Happiness MM HH Mh/Hm Primary driver for approach behavior (for significant task) Meaningful Masochists Hedonists Happy
  • The Science of Behavior Meaning vs Happiness Meaningful Masochists Hedonists Happy - incentives +incentives
  • The Science of Behavior Meaning vs Happiness Meaningful Masochists Hedonists Happy - incentives Will sacrifice happiness for Meaning +incentives “Feel good now” (short-term satisfaction)
  • The Science of Behavior Meaning vs Happiness Meaningful Masochists Hedonists Happy - incentives Will sacrifice happiness for Meaning Self-sustaining +incentives “Feel good now” (short-term satisfaction) Less loyalty
  • The Science of Behavior Meaning vs Happiness Meaningful Masochists Hedonists Happy - incentives Will sacrifice happiness for Meaning Self-sustaining Punishment NOT a motivator! +incentives “Feel good now” (short-term satisfaction) Less loyalty “Pain builds character!”
  • The Science of Behavior The onlyway to guarantee LONG-TERM sustainable behavior change: make them WANTto change their behavior.
  • The Science of Behavior Feed their inner masochist. Make it meaningful.
  • The Science of Behavior Thank you! @AndreaKuszewski Feed their inner masochist. Make it meaningful.