Why is it so hard to make lasting changes in our companies, in our communities, and in our own lives?
The primary obstacle is a conflict thats built into our brains, say Chip and Dan Heath, authors of the critically acclaimed best seller Made to Stick. Psychologists have discovered that our minds are ruled by two different systems, the rational mind and the emotional mind, that compete for control. The rational mind wants a great beach body; the emotional mind wants that Oreo cookie. The rational mind wants to change something at work; the emotional mind loves the comfort of the existing routine. This tension can doom a change effort but if it is overcome, change can come quickly.
In Switch, the Heaths show how everyday people - employees and managers, parents and nurses - have united both minds and, as a result, achieved dramatic results:
The lowly medical interns who managed to defeat an entrenched, decades-old medical practice that was endangering patients.
The home-organizing guru who developed a simple technique for overcoming the dread of housekeeping.
The manager who transformed a lackadaisical customer-support team into service zealots by removing a standard tool of customer service
In a compelling, story-driven narrative, the Heaths bring together decades of counterintuitive research in psychology, sociology, and other fields to shed new light on how we can effect transformative change. Switch shows that successful changes follow a pattern, a pattern you can use to make the changes that matter to you, whether your interest is in changing the world or changing your waistline.
©2010 Chip Heath (P)2010 Random House
The case studies that illustrate the book's major principles will help you understand and remember its core principles. They also make for compelling listening. Another strength of the book is that the examples cut across so many fields from personal improvement, to business, to health care.
I found particularly helpful the idea that scheduling greatly helps new habit formation. E.g., if you want to start running, at the beginning of the week, sit down with your calendar and block off realistic times for the week when you will go running (in the books words, "script the critical moves"). Protect that calendar entry like you would any other important meeting. It's funny how much that little bit of planning helps -- and the book explains why and why you're much more likely to fail to install a new habit without it.
Some people complained about the narrator. I thought he was just fine. I generally prefer to listen at 1.5x or 2x and found the narration comfortable at those speeds.
For Jonathan Haidt fans (Happiness Hypothesis and The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided by Politics and Religion), Switch makes good use of the "elephant/rider" bucket of concepts.
Very interesting, and applicable to the changes we want to make in life, personal and professional. Other reviews criticized the narration, but I found it to be fine.
Thanks to a long commute, I listen to more audiobooks than is probably healthy.
I loved all the stories, they were very inspiring!
The campaign to save 100 000 lives, since I work in health care.
Exactly the same. I liked his time - I found it soothing.
The rider only thinks he controls the elephant.
Tremendous insight into creating habits that can transform your life. Build systems to do anything you want to do, and learn how to make them "stick" (unlike many of our "New Year's Resolutions.")
A lot of books discuss the problems of change, but this book was excellent in that it gives practical advice on how to equip yourself to create successful change.
There aren't really characters in the book so much as examples and situations.
I believe this was narrated by the author and the narration style is non-obtrusive and generally good. I believe they also did Myth of the Garage which was very similar in style.
This book is excellent to take over several sittings. Each chapter is pretty discrete. You may want to actually take notes and re-read it periodically.
After the audiobook, I almost want to get the physical book so I can refer back to sections of it later as things come up. That is no knock on the audiobook at all. It's just that it is information-dense with tons of good info that I would benefit from re-exposing myself.
Switch contains a comprehensive approach to dealing with culture change and/or behavior change that seems applicable to just about any situation...large or small. The real life examples and research make the observations and techniques meaningful.
One memorable moment would hard to define in this book. The childhood nutrition problems encountered and solved in Vietnam where probably one of the daunting and fulfilling from my perspective.
I'm an auditory learner, so I get a lot from most audio books. In this case, the narrator's voice had good inflection and a good rhythm, even at 1.25x normal playback speed.
The most practical idea for my situation was "find the bright spot"...a concept about showing how an existing desirable behavior turned out well; the antithesis of this is nagging about how good a theoretical behavior change is the right thing to do (without any evidence of the outcome except an emotional appeal).
At first I wasn't sure about this book ... the first hour or so seemed to be a repeat of basic social psychology books I've already read (i.e. I recognized all of the experiements they cited). Fortunately, the book picks up with new examples later on which made things more interesting.
The premise seems to be "rider versus elephant" ... a more simplistic view of "ego versus id" ... I didn't like the metaphore at first, but became more enamoured with time.
An interesting read, and an excellent narration. I liked the authors other book "make it stick" better.
This is a terrific book about changing behavior around you at work and at home.
The narrator is one of my ABSOLUTE favorites.
Change is possible.
Excellent stories about change with a lot of easy to follow bullet points that are repeated often. There are case studies of real world examples of change taking place in situations that are not typically incubators of change.
I liked breaking it up into pieces so I could absorb more of the information. I would like to listen to it several more times.
Yes, I feel the content was good and once I got over the horrible narration after the third listen, I enjoyed the content.
Find a different Narrator
Find a different Narrator
Only if the Narrator was not in it.
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