I am making a bit of a departure here by writing a book review, but I found this book thought provoking and an opportunity to do some self evaluation. I just finished reading the book Sway:The Irresistible Pull of Irrational Behavior by Ori Brafman and Rom Brafman.

When you are discussing and reviewing the actions of leaders, managers, clients, friends or family and the thought that their choice or decision defies logic, reading this book offers some insight into what drives people and the choices they make. It is a relatively fast and easy read and you don’t have to have a science or psychiatric degree to understand the theories they discuss.

There are interesting insights and examples to demonstrate behaviors and choices that we have all experienced and exhibited. The idea that I can reflect on some of my own choices and instead of only thinking ‘well that is just the way it is’ or ‘I don’t know, I had to go with my gut on that one’ there is an opportunity here to look back and really understand what was going on. Sometimes the wrong choices and actions can’t be helped and sometimes there is not a win-win resolve as a situation evolves but understanding how one has arrived in that state can be helpful toward improving your overall choices and decisions.

As managers or business owners, we are constantly making decisions and choices whether it is who we are hiring, what vendor we are selecting, and in what direction we are going to move our company. Understanding how we make decisions is helpful and this book offers insight on all of these topics.

Gaining an understanding how others make decisions is invaluable as we sell, manage clients and our staff.

The greatest take-away for me from this book is their discussion on research that shows that groups make better decisions when there is a “blocker” or a nay-sayer participating. Not that the concept of a devil’s advocate is anything new, but having experimental data to support the value makes me think that I need to be more open to encouraging this type of person in the mix. I know at times it has been my role and so now I feel better about myself as well.

This book won’t take up a lot of your time and is well worth the read. Afterward, come back to this blog post and let me know your thoughts!

Mardy Sitzer
Bumblebee Design & Marketing
http://www.bumblebeellc.com / 212-677-4050

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