a story about 5 monkeys


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  • Thank you streetsaint - i was having negative thoughts about scientists who would conduct such an experiment, so it helps me to hear that it is a fictional experiment - I am confident it would work in reality though - group culture and habit is very powerful - The Lucifer Effect is a book on this written by the guy who ran the Stanford Prison Experiment
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  • I shall add this Paradigm story to the Admiral and Lighthouse keeper one that Steven Covey tells. What we trainers and coaches are setting out to do is help people change their behaviour by getting them to challenge their unconscious assumptions. As Henry Ford said, 'If you think you can, or you think you can't, you're right'
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  • Though I love this story, it was not actually conducted as an experiment. No scientist has ever been verified.

    More info here: http://blog.stsaint.com/philosophy/2010/05/5-monkeys-experiment/
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  • What a great story, can't stop remembering it. I am a trainer with an NGO in Nigeria and would like to use this story. Could you please send me the soft copy through my email: ask4africa@yahoo.co.uk


    P. E. Africa
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  • Nice story about money
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a story about 5 monkeys

  1. 1. How Is A Paradigm Formed? "Only two things are infinite: The universe and human stupidity. And I am not so sure about the former." Albert Einstein
  2. 2. A group of scientists placed 5 monkeys in a cage and in the middle, a ladder with bananas on the top.
  3. 3. Every time a monkey went up the ladder, the scientists soaked the rest of the monkeys with cold water.
  4. 4. After a while, every time a monkey went up the ladder, the others beat up the one on the ladder.
  5. 5. After some time, no monkey dare to go up the ladder regardless of the temptation.
  6. 6. Scientists then decided to substitute one of the monkeys. The 1 st thing this new monkey did was to go up the ladder. Immediately the other monkeys beat him up.
  7. 7. After several beatings, the new member learned not to climb the ladder even though never knew why.
  8. 8. A 2 nd monkey was substituted and the same occurred. The 1 st monkey participated on the beating for the 2 nd monkey. A 3 rd monkey was changed and the same was repeated (beating). The 4 th was substituted and the beating was repeated and finally the 5 th monkey was replaced.
  9. 9. What was left was a group of 5 monkeys that even though never received a cold shower, continued to beat up any monkey who attempted to climb the ladder.
  10. 10. If it was possible to ask the monkeys why they would beat up all those who attempted to go up the ladder….. I bet you the answer would be…. “ I don’t know – that’s how things are done around here” Does it sounds familiar?
  11. 11. Don’t miss the opportunity to share this with others as they might be asking themselves why we continue to do what we are doing if there is a different way out there.