Sidetracked: Why Our Decisions Get Derailed, and How We Can Stick to the Plan

Sidetracked: Why Our Decisions Get Derailed, and How We Can Stick to the Plan

by Francesca Gino

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Overview

Sidetracked: Why Our Decisions Get Derailed, and How We Can Stick to the Plan by Francesca Gino

You may not realize it but simple, irrelevant factors can have profound consequences on your decisions and behavior, often diverting you from your original plans and desires. Sidetracked will help you identify and avoid these influences so the decisions you make do stick—and you finally reach your intended goals.

Psychologist and Harvard Business School professor Francesca Gino has long studied the factors at play when judgment and decision making collide with the results of our choices in real life. In this book she explores inconsistent decisions played out in a wide range of circumstances—from our roles as consumers and employees (what we buy, how we manage others) to the choices that we make more broadly as human beings (who we date, how we deal with friendships). From Gino’s research, we see when a mismatch is most likely to occur between what we want and what we end up doing. What factors are likely to sway our decisions in directions we did not initially consider? And what can we do to correct for the subtle influences that derail our decisions? The answers to these and similar questions will help you negotiate similar factors when faced with them in the real world.

For fans of Dan Ariely and Daniel Kahneman, this book will help you better understand the nuances of your decisions and how they get derailed—so you have more control over keeping them on track.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781422142691
Publisher: Harvard Business Review Press
Publication date: 02/26/2013
Pages: 272
Sales rank: 1,238,763
Product dimensions: 6.58(w) x 9.32(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Francesca Gino is Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School. Her research focuses on judgment and decision making, ethics, productivity, and creativity. Her studies have been featured on CNN and NPR, as well as in leading print publications, including the Economist , the Financial Times , the New York Times , Newsweek , Scientific American , and Psychology Today . In 2009 the New York Times featured Gino’s research in the 9th Annual Year in Ideas. In 2015 she was chosen by Poets & Quants as one of the “Best 40 Under 40 Professors,” a ranking of the world’s top business school professors under the age of forty.

What People are Saying About This

Chip Heath

“Francesca Gino is one of the smartest and most insightful decision researchers in the field. Her clever research informs every page of this book and it will change the way you think about decision making.”
—Chip Heath, Professor of Organizational Behavior, Stanford Graduate School of Business; co-author, Made to Stick and Switch: How to Change Things When Change is Hard

Dan Ariely

“We are often unaware of the many forces that affect our decisions—sometimes with devastating consequences. In Sidetracked, Francesca Gino identifies and illuminates many of these forces to help us all make decisions that we, our mothers, and our kids will be happier with.”
—Dan Ariely, Professor of Psychology and Behavioral Economics, Duke University; author of the New York Times bestsellers Predictably Irrational, The Upside of Irrationality, and The Honest Truth about Dishonesty

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Sidetracked: Why Our Decisions Get Derailed, and How We Can Stick to the Plan 3.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Tunguz More than 1 year ago
Getting sidetracked form our plans and initiatives is all too common of occurrences. Weather it’s not sticking to our New Year’s resolutions, or not following up with contacting an important business contact despite our best intentions to the contrary, we’ve all had to deal with not sticking up with our plans. Francesca Gino’s “Sidetracked” is a book that aims to help us stick to the plan by mining many deep and valuable psychological insights. This is a thoroughly well researched and informative book. Gino possesses a wealth of well-constructed research and experience – both inside the university labs and in the business world. This book is filled with carefully explained studies that have taken many years to collect and establish, as well as many insights from the business consulting. The book is well written and engaging, and Gino takes great care to explain the mechanisms of her and her colleagues’ research in great detail. These are some of the best explained social science findings that I’ve come across in popular accounts, and anyone who has even the passing interest in psychology and social sciences in general would greatly benefit from reading this book. After reading it I have a much better appreciation for my own motivations, drives and blind spots, as well as those of others around me.  For all its great qualities, this book is not without some shortcomings. Most of the “real world” examples come from the business world (I guess this is not surprising for a book published by the Harvard Business Review Press) and oftentimes have more to do with big-scale corporate decision-making than with individual and personal decisions. Furthermore, I found it hard to see how some of the psychological insights and principles that were investigated throughout the book have direct bearing on getting sidetracked. Finally, this is really not a “self-help” book despite what its subtitle may suggest. The actual advice that it gives, or the concrete steps that it espouses, are minimal and usually relegated to just a couple of pages at the end of each chapter. Turning deep insights into concrete actionable advice has always been one of the most difficult tasks in any field, and I was hoping that this book would have done a better job of it.  This a smart, insightful, and very well written book that has a lot to offer to everyone who is interested in psychological underpinnings of our decision making. However, it has a somewhat limited value as a practical guide that can be immediately applied in our daily lives. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Horrible book, don't waste your time. Too many better books out there and not enough time to read those. Skip this one for sure.