Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions

Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions

by Dan Ariely


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780061353239
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 02/19/2008
Pages: 304
Product dimensions: 6.12(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.01(d)

About the Author

Dr. Dan Ariely, 40, is the Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Behavioral Economics at MIT, where he holds a joint appointment between MIT’s Program in Media Arts and Sciences and the Sloan School of Management. He is also a visiting scholar at the Boston Federal Reserve Bank and a fellow at the Institute for Advance Study at Princeton. Dr. Ariely publishes widely in the leading scholarly journals in economics, psychology, and business. His work has been featured in a variety of media including The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Boston Globe, Business 2.0, Scientific American, Science, CNN, NPR, and he was interviewed for ABC 20/20’s segment on Freakonomics. Born in New York City, he lives in Boston, MA and Princeton, NJ.

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Predictably Irrational
The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions

Chapter One

The Truth about Relativity

Why Everything Is Relative—Even When It Shouldn't Be

One day while browsing the World Wide Web (obviously for work—not just wasting time), I stumbled on the following ad, on the Web site of a magazine, the Economist.

I read these offers one at a time. The first offer—the Internet subscription for $59—seemed reasonable. The second option—the $125 print subscription—seemed a bit expensive, but still reasonable.

But then I read the third option: a print and Internet subscription for $125. I read it twice before my eye ran back to the previous options. Who would want to buy the print option alone, I wondered, when both the Internet and the print subscriptions were offered for the same price? Now, the print-only option may have been a typographical error, but I suspect that the clever people at the Economist's London offices (and they are clever—and quite mischievous in a British sort of way) were actually manipulating me. I am pretty certain that they wanted me to skip the Internet-only option (which they assumed would be my choice, since I was reading the advertisement on the Web) and jump to the more expensive option: Internet and print.

But how could they manipulate me? I suspect it's because the Economist's marketing wizards (and I could just picture them in their school ties and blazers) knew something important about human behavior: humans rarely choose things in absolute terms. We don't have an internal value meter that tells us howmuch things are worth. Rather, we focus on the relative advantage of one thing over another, and estimate value accordingly. (For instance, we don't know how much a six-cylinder car is worth, but we can assume it's more expensive than the four-cylinder model.)

In the case of the Economist, I may not have known whether the Internet-only subscription at $59 was a better deal than the print-only option at $125. But I certainly knew that the print-and-Internet option for $125 was better than the print-only option at $125. In fact, you could reasonably deduce that in the combination package, the Internet subscription is free! "It's a bloody steal—go for it, governor!" I could almost hear them shout from the riverbanks of the Thames. And I have to admit, if I had been inclined to subscribe I probably would have taken the package deal myself. (Later, when I tested the offer on a large number of participants, the vast majority preferred the Internet-and-print deal.)

So what was going on here? Let me start with a fundamental observation: most people don't know what they want unless they see it in context. We don't know what kind of racing bike we want—until we see a champ in the Tour de France ratcheting the gears on a particular model. We don't know what kind of speaker system we like—until we hear a set of speakers that sounds better than the previous one. We don't even know what we want to do with our lives—until we find a relative or a friend who is doing just what we think we should be doing. Everything is relative, and that's the point. Like an airplane pilot landing in the dark, we want runway lights on either side of us, guiding us to the place where we can touch down our wheels.

In the case of the Economist, the decision between the Internet-only and print-only options would take a bit of thinking. Thinking is difficult and sometimes unpleasant. So the Economist's marketers offered us a no-brainer: relative to the print-only option, the print-and-Internet option looks clearly superior.

The geniuses at the Economist aren't the only ones who understand the importance of relativity. Take Sam, the television salesman. He plays the same general type of trick on us when he decides which televisions to put together on display:

36-inch Panasonic for $690
42-inch Toshiba for $850
50-inch Philips for $1,480

Which one would you choose? In this case, Sam knows that customers find it difficult to compute the value of different options. (Who really knows if the Panasonic at $690 is a better deal than the Philips at $1,480?) But Sam also knows that given three choices, most people will take the middle choice (as in landing your plane between the runway lights). So guess which television Sam prices as the middle option? That's right—the one he wants to sell!

Of course, Sam is not alone in his cleverness. The New York Times ran a story recently about Gregg Rapp, a restaurant consultant, who gets paid to work out the pricing for menus. He knows, for instance, how lamb sold this year as opposed to last year; whether lamb did better paired with squash or with risotto; and whether orders decreased when the price of the main course was hiked from $39 to $41.

One thing Rapp has learned is that high-priced entrées on the menu boost revenue for the restaurant—even if no one buys them. Why? Because even though people generally won't buy the most expensive dish on the menu, they will order the second most expensive dish. Thus, by creating an expensive dish, a restaurateur can lure customers into ordering the second most expensive choice (which can be cleverly engineered to deliver a higher profit margin).1

So let's run through the Economist's sleight of hand in slow motion.

As you recall, the choices were:

1. Internet-only subscription for $59.
2. Print-only subscription for $125.
3. Print-and-Internet subscription for $125.

When I gave these options to 100 students at MIT's Sloan School of Management, they opted as follows:

1. Internet-only subscription for $59—16 students
2. Print-only subscription for $125—zero students
3. Print-and-Internet subscription for $125—84 students

Predictably Irrational
The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions
. Copyright © by Dan Ariely. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

Table of Contents

Introduction: How an Injury Led Me to Irrationality and to the Research Described Here xi

Chapter 1 The Truth about Relativity: Why Everything Is Relative—Even When It Shouldn't Be 1

Chapter 2 The Fallacy of Supply and Demand: Why the Price of Pearls—and Everything Else—Is Up in the Air 25

Chapter 3 The Cost of Zero Cost: Why We Often Pay Too Much When We Pay Nothing 55

Chapter 4 The Cost of Social Norms: Why We Are Happy to Do Things, but Not When We Are Paid to Do Them 75

Chapter 5 The Power of a Free Cookie: How free Can Make Us Less Selfish 103

Chapter 6 The Influence of Arousal: Why Hot Is Much Hotter Than We Realize 119

Chapter 7 The Problem of Procrastination and Self-Control: Why We Can't Make Ourselves Do What We Want to Do 139

Chapter 8 The High Price of Ownership: Why We Overvalue What We Have 167

Chapter 9 Keeping Doors Open: Why Options Distract Us from Our Main Objective 183

Chapter 10 The Effect of Expectations: Why the Mind Gets What It Expects 199

Chapter 11 The Power of Price: Why a 50-Cent Aspirin Can Do What a Penny Aspirin Can't 225

Chapter 12 The Cycle of Distrust: Why We Don't Believe What Marketers Tell Us 251

Chapter 13 The Context of Our Character, Part I: Why We Are Dishonest, and What We Can Do about It 271

Chapter 14 The Context of Our Character, Part II: Why Dealing with Cash Makes Us More Honest 295

Chapter 15 Beer and Free Lunches: What Is Behavioral Economics, and Where Are the Free Lunches? 309

Thanks 323

List of Collaborators 327

Notes 335

Bibliography and Additional Readings 339

What People are Saying About This

Nassim Nicholas Taleb

“This is a wonderful, eye-opening book. Deep, readable, and providing refreshing evidence that there are domains and situations in which material incentives work in unexpected ways. We humans are humans, with qualities that can be destroyed by the introduction of economic gains. A must read!”

James Surowiecki

“Dan Ariely is a genius at understanding human behavior: no economist does a better job of uncovering and explaining the hidden reasons for the weird ways we act, in the marketplace and out. PREDICTABLY IRRATIONAL will reshape the way you see the world, and yourself, for good.”

Nicholas Negroponte

“After reading this book, you will understand the decisions you make in an entirely new way.”

Chip Heath

“Freakonomics held that people respond to incentives, perhaps in undesirable ways, but always rationally. Dan Ariely shows you how people are deeply irrational, and predictably so.”

Jerome Groopman

“A marvelous book that is both thought provoking and highly entertaining, ranging from the power of placebos to the pleasures of Pepsi. Ariely unmasks the subtle but powerful tricks that our minds play on us, and shows us how we can prevent being fooled.”

Kenneth Arrow

“Dan Ariely’s ingenious experiments explore deeply how our economic behavior is influenced by irrational forces and social norms. In a charmingly informal style that makes it accessible to a wide audience, PREDICTABLY IRRATIONAL provides a standing criticism to the explanatory power of rational egotistic choice.”

Paul Slovic

“Predictably Irrational is clever, playful,humorous, hard hitting, insightful, and consistently fun and exciting to read.”

George Akerlof

"Predictably Irrational is wildly original. It shows why-much more often than we usually care to admit-humans make foolish, and sometimes disastrous, mistakes. Ariely not only gives us a great read; he also makes us much wiser."--(George Akerlof, 2001 Nobel Laureate in Economics, Koshland Professor of Economics, University of California at Berkeley)

Daniel Gilbert

“PREDICTABLY IRRATIONAL is a charmer-filled with clever experiments, engaging ideas, and delightful anecdotes. Dan Ariely is a wise and amusing guide to the foibles, errors, and bloopers of everyday decision-making.”

Daniel McFadden

"This is going to be the most influential, talked-about book in years. It is so full of dazzling insights-and so engaging-that once I started reading, I couldn't put it down."--(Daniel McFadden, 2000 Nobel Laureate in Economics, Morris Cox Professor of Economics, University of California at Berkeley)

Charles Schwab

“The most difficult part of investing is managing your emotions. Dan explains why that is so challenging for all of us, and how recognizing your built-in biases can help you avoid common mistakes.”

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Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 188 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
¿Do you know why we so often promise ourselves to diet, only to have the thought vanish when the desert cart rolls by?¿ This question is one of several asked by Dan Ariely in the introduction of his recent book ¿Predictably Irrational.¿ He subsequently states that ¿¿By the end of the book, you¿ll know the answers to these and many other questions that have implications for your personal life, for your business life, and for the way you look at the world.¿ An equally tantalizing statement follows in which the author describes how a set of events in his childhood cemented a life perspective that is quite different from 'and presumably more insightful than' your average person. Together, these preliminary contents set the tone for some high expectations. What follows, however, is a mildly interesting, sometimes trite, and often oversimplified set of observations and `clever¿ experiments that come across more as products of extensive free time than brainchildren of a truly deep thinker. While some disappointment stems from the ambitious prologue, a rudimentary problem with Ariely¿s thesis lies in the set-up. He starts early with a summarized definition of classical economics, which surmises that we are all rational and, in every day life, compute the value of all options we face and then select the one that maximizes our gain. Any action we take that is not in our best economic interest, therefore, is irrational, and as Ariely opines, surprising in its very nature. But while rational behavior of participating agents may be the basis of economic theory, very few people spend any time thinking about this theory other than economists. For the rest of us, there is no question and certainly no surprise that our social and economic behavior can be irrational, and we have countless reminders of this every day. We know that too many options can diminish returns 'chapter 8'. We also know that expectations often shape our perceptions 'chapter 9', and nobody doubts the allure of free merchandise 'chapter 3'. At the conclusion of each chapter, then, the reader is left with someone else¿s reinforcing account of what he/she is already aware of. Whereas related offerings such as Tim Harford¿s ¿Undercover Economist¿ or Nassim Taleb¿s ¿Fooled by Randomness¿ offer technical and less-tangible insights into topics such as economics, behavior, and probability, ¿Predictably Irrational¿ relies too heavily on the concept that the author¿s perspective is deeper than our own. This leads to a distillation of complex psychology 'not to mention biochemistry and evolution, among others' into oversimplified explanations and human trials involving free beer. In the end, one is left with the feeling that the author himself is much more interesting than anything uncovered by his experiments on college kids.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed reading the book but now that I think about the examples and experiments discussed in the book, I find most of them flawed. So I wondered why I did not catch the flaws when reading the book. I now realize it was because Dan (the author) either cleverly manipulates the readers or he is just a natural at it and does not realize that he is manipulating the audience. So I will reserve personal judgement against him, whether his style is purposely or just inadvertently manipulative. Afterall, he claims to be expert in behaviorial science so I can easily imagine that the book and the manipulative style are an experiment that he is conducting to see how people respond. So without further ado, let me begin. His very first discussion is about his personal experience with a tragic severe skin burn, which led him to question how people perceive things and how they rationalize their behavior. In writing about his own experience he draws the reader's sympathy - i.e., he gets the readers off-guard into a sympathetic and trusting mode, whereby they immediately admire him for overcoming his tragedy and delivering great research to the mass audience. Very clever, Dan! Throughout the book he mentions MIT, Harvard, Berkeley as the places where he conducts research and that he had an offer to be at Stanford - he cleverly drops names of prestigious research schools all in an attempt to create an impression that his work is rigorous. I sub-consciously gave him a pass while reading the book, but now I feel I was duped. Here are some flaws with the examples and/or experiments he discusses: 1) He suggets that perhaps our ethical compass is coarse - i.e., for most people the compass does not respond to petty theft they commit but does respond to large scale theft they might contemplate but not commit to -- like not stealing a carton of pencils but willing to steal one pencial from the stationery room. First of all, we don't steal a pencil from a store but we do take from our workplace -- so clearly it is not about the number of pencils but rather the context where the pencil is to be had. I claim we take a pencil from work without paying for it in cash but not from a shop because we can compensate the firm by working a little harder or longer and at the same time avoiding the transaction cost of purchasing a 10 cent pencil at a store or by trying to compensate our employer with 10 cents in cash. The reason people don't steal the entire box of pencils is because they don't need so many pencils all they need is one pencil. Dan suggests that people could be honest and purchase it at a nearby store for 10 cents. He ignores that going to the store and then paying 10 cents for a pencil also comes with a large transaction cost, which is a pure deadweight cost which can be easily avoided by just taking the pencil from the office. The social welfare is greater if one just takes the pencil instead of imposing a transaction cost on the owner and on oneself. Even leaving 10 cents with the secretary at the firm entails a huge transaction cost for the firm. Therefore, it is better to just take the pencil. Furthermore, our compass works just fine, even for petty stuff, when others take a pencil. Thus, our compasses do in fact respond to petty conduct. By the way, I would take a pencil from work even when the secretary or the boss is observing me. So I don't think Dan has seriously thought about this issues even though he seems to think he has. 2) The experiment about selling a football ticket (which was won in a lottery) and about buying a ticket is also flawed. The reason why the ticket winners wanted $2400 for their ticket was probably because that was the 'going' price for the tickets in the secondary (scalpers) market, just before the game. And, the reason the students who did not win the tickets in the lottery were willing to pay at most $170 or $175 (he reports two different numbers) is because that is all they
Guest More than 1 year ago
Predictably Irrational is an exceptional book on a number of fronts. First, from the writing style, it is absolutely accessible and that isn't always the case when academians convert research into a book designed for the mass market. This book is as accessible and interesting to read as Freakonomics was. Second, this is the first book to do such a thorough job of connecting psychology, human behavior and economics. This book should be an immediate read for every marketer, salesperson, CEO or non-profit without exception. When you read this book you'll learn about how you and I make decisions and if you are honest you'll recognize yourself over and over in the reading. You and I make decisions the same way everyone else does. And, as a marketer, a salesperson, a funds solicitor for a non-profit, we'll make more, get more and achieve more to the extent that we leverage these automatic processes. Most people don't fight or even acknowledge their own decision making processes, they just go through the process. What they think is control is really an illusion as this book so clearly points out. You and I can and are regularly influenced subliminally by the way information is presented. The chapters on Free and the chapter on The Fallacy of Supply and Demand are invaluable. Ariely's explanation of price anchoring will change how you think about MSRP or even your intitial pricing discussion in sales. His experiement using the last two digits of your social security number is very eye opening. This is also an example of something very easy for you to test in your own marketing organization or social group.s Interestingly, where at the time of this review we are facing a recession, I find this book essential reading for those who would change the face of the recession as well as the duration. It was interesting to me to read some of the negative reviews of the book but most of them focused on wanting to challenge the conclusions without reading all of the research papers. And, I didn't see many of the people who were critical provide the level of observational credibility that Mr. Ariely does. This book just made it to my desktop library, the 10 books I'll refer back to again and again when I create marketing material, influence strategies or consult with clients. This book is a powerful read.
Alex Zhilyakov More than 1 year ago
Nook ebook is 2009 edition and costs more than newer paperback 2010 edition. Annoyed Nook customer
bbman335 More than 1 year ago
I wanted to like this book, I really did, but what a let down. The premise of the book is that the author conducts 'experiments' to determine how people make decisions-not based on facts, but on other factors that make the decisions seem irrational. Great, I make decisions, this probably applies to me. In a word, no. Every 'experiment' suffers from at least one fatal flaw which invalidates the conclusions it generates...but the author even goes further and makes conclusions that don't even apply to the 'experiment'. 1) Selection bias is present in every 'experiment" as the subjects of the 'experiment' are students from liberal universities. (But the author tries very hard to convince us that Cal-Berkeley is a moderate institution...that's irrational!) The problem with students being the primary target of the "experiments" is that they are, well students. I went to college and yes, many decisions I made in college were quite irrational looking back, so maybe the book should be called "college kids make irrational choices." 2) the conclusions are not substantiated by the "experiment". In one, he surveys about sexual issues and asks the group one set of questions, then later asks them the same questions while they masturbate. I'm on the edge...will the results will be different? Duh! My conclusion to this survey is different from the authors, now stopped making decisions while I masturbate, and they are much more rational. In another survey, he sees if ownership changes perception of value and he uses basketball tickets at Duke. Those that have tickets won't part with them for less than $2400, those that don't have tickets are willing to pay $ the conclusion is that having something makes it inherently more valuable just because you own it...funny how the actual value of the tickets is omitted. I'm thinking $2400 was likely the going rate for those tickets, but what student has that kind of money to go to a basketball game? Of course they wouldn't offer that to buy the tickets, if they could, do you think they would have wasted a week in line for a chance to get a ticket? That would have been irrational. In a third example, he let his students select their own due dates for papers. Those that had their deadlines given to them got better grades than those that set their own deadlines. Fine, so what is the conclusion? College kids are unstructured and need guidance? No, the conclusion is that college kids procrastinate...even though no part of the study indicated when the students began to work on the papers for submission...since they got lower grades, they must have procrastinated. Um, ok, I guess..really? 3)The author clearly has an agenda and even tries to disprove supply/demand theory which in the authors opinion changes based on social/market norms. How does he do this? He charges 1 cent for a Hersey's kiss then offers them for free. They take less once it is free. So because they didn't take the whole bowl even though it was free, it's because social norms have taken over and market rules fail to apply. Really? Go to a homeless shelter and conduct the same experiment or put out free water bottles in Haiti and see if they just take one to be polite. I'm betting the results might be different. In the end, the book makes no breakthroughs, offers no insight and is highly biased. If that appeals to you, read on, otherwise pass.
SDDA More than 1 year ago
I read this book and loved it so much I've given it as a gift to everyone from my 86-year-old aunt to my 34-year-old sister. It's written in a lively manner and many of its points are pretty eye-opening. I've also heard Mr. Ariely interviewed several times and he is a very engaging and funny guy.
ivirago on LibraryThing 2 days ago
I enjoyed this - well worth a read. Some interesting experiments talked about in this book - particularly made me think about the rigour that's involved in trying to make sure your observations are valid - hard work!
adendate on LibraryThing 2 days ago
Ariely's quintessential argument is that "chicago boys" classical economics fails to consider the irrationality of individual consumers, that said irrationality is actually quite predictable, and that this predictablity has far sweeping economic implications.Without wanting to repeat past reviews, my single biggest qualm with the book was the final point of Ariely's assertion - the implications of these small irrationalities to the broader economic environment. For example, consider his point that things labelled "free" attract a disproportionate reaction from the buyer (that is, a reduction in price from $4 to $0 produces greater behavioural change than a reduction from $20 to $16, even though the marginal benefit is identical). This is a fair point for the individual consumer, but "so what" for the market as a whole? Were the subprime mortgages packaged with other investments overlooked because they were percieved as "free" by buyers? Do people often fall in to deep debt because of "interest free" luxury purchases, reducing the savings rate of individuals and leading to investment bubbles? I can't answer these questions, and Ariely didn't even attempt to. As such, his point - while meaningful for individual consumers and potentially for marketers, fails to abstract to the greater economic realm.If the scope of the book is to inspire consumers to reflect upon their behaviour, the book is a superb success. However, for anyone with an academic interest in macroeconomics, the book fails to make its message relevant.
raycun on LibraryThing 2 days ago
Essentially an attack on the idea that people make rational economic decisions, and when they don't the market smoothes it all out, through the medium of simple experiments that show some forms of irrationality that we're all prone to. Nicely self-deprecating.
stefano on LibraryThing 2 days ago
Very accessible description of various experiments in micro-economics. The outcome is invariably that decisions are heavily influenced by factors that are either un-acknowledged (influence of non-monetary set-up in cheating) or not accurately accounted for (e.g. physical arousal). This is not a comment on the book itself, but these ideas have by now been so widely disseminated in popular science publications that I don't feel I have learned very much from the book that I hadn't already read about elsewhere. Maybe one thing: that much of the thinking that led to this book was triggered by a very traumatic experience, 70% third degree burns from a magnesium flare left Ariely hospitalized for many months at age 18.
stephaniechase on LibraryThing 30 days ago
The strangeness of the human mind, and human emotions, never ceases to amaze. Occasionally it feels as though Ariely is repeating himself, and he never really offers solutions for how to overcome our predictably irrational tendencies (are there any?), but his book makes for reading that is both humorous and frightening.It's amazing what folks will do -- or give up -- for the lure of free!
pbirch01 on LibraryThing 30 days ago
This is another great example of a great idea that would make an excellent long article in a publication such as the New Yorker, but instead gets overstretched into a book. Ariely uses many unique studies to highlight the seemingly irrational behavior of people, well actually only people in Boston, Chapel Hill, and Berkeley. Anyways, his studies are well thought out and generally pretty interesting. However, after about the midpoint the book starts to fall apart. The studies outcomes are easily predicted and the light, fluffy prose soon becomes heavy and plodding. While the book altogether makes some interesting observations based on studies, the material is stretched so thin I felt I was being a bit irrational in trying to finish it.
Anonymous 6 months ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
We believe we are rational, but the authors demonstrate myriad ways in which we are not. With a light hearted and entertaining style, the authors show how studies have shown that we are much less rational that we believe. Easy to read and well supported, this book leaves you wondering about your own decisions.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I had attended the coursera course by the author and found this book to be very informative and applicable to dat to day life.
ctfranklin28 More than 1 year ago
"Predictably Irrational" by Dan Ariely is a book that I already recommended to friends on Twitter and Facebook before I even finished the book because it challenges so much of what I thought about human nature. According to Ariely, human nature can fall prey to irrational acts. Most of us know that, but what I find more interesting is that Ariely says that these irrational acts are predictable. They aren't just things we do every once in a while. Ariely demonstrates this theory by tackling big aspects of human nature (greed, lust, procrastination, lying) in an engaging way in every single chapter. Each chapter presents the issue or question and a central "What Would You Do?" type of experiment that Ariely often conducted on MIT (or other campus) students. Ariely then walks you through the results and the bigger implications of what that means. The results and implications of his experiments were truly astounding. Some of the results he came back with include: 1. What we believe-Saving is actually a good thing. What we actually do- Procrastinate because our brain focuses more on the now. 2. What we believe-We know the price of something What we actually do-There really isn't a price to anything we sell or make, until we "anchor" it. That all depends on the first price we pay for something (kind of like the baby ducks "imprinting" on the first thing they see. 3. What we believe-We have the same sexual interests and tastes, no matter what. What we actually do- We are actually a lot more freakier than we anticipate (Cold & Warm states) 4. What we believe-We aren't influenced by what our friends eat at when we go out. What we do-We are highly influenced by what our friends do and often make choices (ones we're not always happy with) based on what others thing 5 What we believe-We won't lie if given the chance What we do- We do lie with things that have a distance to the direct thing or person we are stealing from or can make feel excuses for. These kinds of ideas challenged my notion of human nature to the core, which is why I truly recommend this book to anyone who likes psychology, but wants to read something a little different than a textbook. Ariely is an excellent teacher and selects the right kinds of stories and experiments that keep you engaged. His solutions (or rather suggestions) to how we can better address the idiosyncrasies of our nature have huge implications that we should think about. I look forward to reading other books from him. For some reason, I can see this book as something Tim Ferriss would read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Overall I believe Dan Ariely brought multiple good topics that was able to resonate with his entire audience. Not only did he state the many problems we face while making an economic decision, he also set up multiple experiments to prove that his statements are true. Also, multiple times during the book he gave us a scenario and told us to put ourselves in that position and see what we would do. This made it easier to comprehend and understand his points further. Overall Ariely clearly analyzes and explains all his points and most importantly why we make irrational decisions.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is generally wonderful.  It has provided some great insights on how to improve our marketing efforts and I plan on continuing to read further.   However, I’m writing this review after picking myself up off the floor because I fell out of my chair after reading the following statement (bottom of page 48), and I quote:  “If you accept the premise that market forces and free markets will not always regulate the market for the best, then you may find yourself among those who believe that the government (we hope a reasonable and thoughtful government) must play a larger role in regulating some market activities, even if this limits free enterprise.” Talk about irrational.  Dan I think you do great work. I like yours talks and your books. Both are very informative.  This statement however makes me think you have lost touch with your audience. It appears as though you have spent too much time in the irrational world of academia and too little time in the much more rational and logical world of business.  
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a great book to read if you're interested in improving the decisions you make on a day to day Basis. I'm now aware of the decisions I make. I recomen this book to anyone.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
KaibiganWP More than 1 year ago
Everyone should read this book. We are all so irrational.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Author-Money-Anxiety More than 1 year ago
Ariely has a talent of presenting human behavior in the most simplistic and clear manner, which helps drive the point home. I enjoyed reading the various behavioral cases outlined in the book and I highly recommend it to anyone. Although I agree with Ariely that consumer behavior is predictable, I would argue that the behavior is rational because there is always a reason behind every decision we make. In my book, Money Anxiety – how financial anxiety impacts consumer behavior and the economy, I show how consumer behavior is influenced by their level of financial anxiety, and that there is always a reason (rationality) to each decision.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago