I’m currently pursuing a career in sales. This is a big change for me, so I’ve been guzzling audiobooks and podcasts about behavior and decision-making. Here’s a few I came across which I think will help anyone, regardless of your occupation.
Influence: Science and practice. This revision of his book published in 1984 is a classic in psychology. Using six principles, Cialdini explains why people make decisions which, on the surface, don’t make any sense. I cannot recommend this book enough. This PDF sums it up pretty well. As a humorous aside, those who have read Montague Summers‘s books on witches might notice a similarity to Robert Cialdini’s book on “compliance practitioners.”
Hidden Brain is a podcast about the quirks of the human mind, usually including recent events and scientific research. I will begin an episode thinking I know everything Shankar Vedantam is going to tell me from the title and description. I always finish surprised by the perspective I’ve gained. Along the way, he manages to tell a few interesting stories, too. This is one of the best podcasts out there, in my opinion. To start, try
- Episode 65: Tunnel Vision (and also Freakonomics – Why Is My Life So Hard?) These helped me understand the destructive power of a scarcity mindset, not just for the individual, but for society. It is the main reason I am not a libertarian.
- Episode 56: Getting Unstuck This is the first podcast I listened to twice. It connected with me, and there’s some useful advice, too.
Freakonomics is a book you might have read. The same people also make a podcast, which is great! This is how I first became interested in behavioral economics. They are not all How-to’s, but there was a series that may particularly interest you:
- How to Be More Productive
- How to Get More Grit in Your Life (Listen to this 44 minute show, and you’ll have about all you need to know from Angela Duckworth’s book, Grit. Hidden Brain also did a similar show, Episode 26: Grit.)
- How to Become Great at Just About Anything
- If you read my other post, and want Tim Ferriss’s work summed up in 41 minutes, How to Be Tim Ferriss