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Used - Good: All pages and cover are intact (including the dust cover, if applicable). Spine may show signs of wear. Pages may include limited notes and highlighting. May include "From the library of" labels. Shrink wrap, dust covers, or boxed set case may be missing. Item may be missing bundled media.
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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 that’s built into our brains, say Chip and Dan Heath, authors of the critically acclaimed bestseller  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.

Amazon.com Review

Chip Heath and Dan Heath on Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard

"Change is hard." "People hate change." Those were two of the most common quotes we heard when we began to study change.

But it occurred to us that if people hate change, they have a funny way of showing it. Every iPhone sold serves as counter-evidence. So does every text message sent, every corporate merger finalized, every aluminum can recycled. And we haven’t even mentioned the biggest changes: Getting married. Having kids. (If people hate change, then having a kid is an awfully dumb decision.)

It puzzled us--why do some huge changes, like marriage, come joyously, while some trivial changes, like submitting an expense report on time, meet fierce resistance?

We found the answer in the research of some brilliant psychologists who’d discovered that people have two separate “systems” in their brains—a rational system and an emotional system. The rational system is a thoughtful, logical planner. The emotional system is, well, emotional—and impulsive and instinctual.

When these two systems are in alignment, change can come quickly and easily (as when a dreamy-eyed couple gets married). When they’re not, change can be grueling (as anyone who has struggled with a diet can attest).

In those situations where change is hard, is it possible to align the two systems? Is it possible to overcome our internal "schizophrenia" about change? We believe it is.

In our research, we studied people trying to make difficult changes: People fighting to lose weight and keep it off. Managers trying to overhaul an entrenched bureaucracy. Activists combatting seemingly intractable problems such as child malnutrition. They succeeded--and, to our surprise, we found striking similarities in the strategies they used. They seemed to share a similar game plan. We wanted, in Switch, to make that game plan available to everyone, in hopes that we could show people how to make the hard changes in life a little bit easier. --Chip and Dan Heath

(Photo © Amy Surdacki)


From Publishers Weekly

The Heath brothers (coauthors of Made to Stick) address motivating employees, family members, and ourselves in their analysis of why we too often fear change. Change is not inherently frightening, but our ability to alter our habits can be complicated by the disjunction between our rational and irrational minds: the self that wants to be swimsuit-season ready and the self that acquiesces to another slice of cake anyway. The trick is to find the balance between our powerful drives and our reason. The authors'' lessons are backed up by anecdotes that deal with such things as new methods used to reform abusive parents, the revitalization of a dying South Dakota town, and the rebranding of megastore Target. Through these lively examples, the Heaths speak energetically and encouragingly on how to modify our behaviors and businesses. This clever discussion is an entertaining and educational must-read for executives and for ordinary citizens looking to get out of a rut. (Mar.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

“Witty and instructive . . . The Heath brothers think that the sciences of human behavior can provide us with tools for making changes in our lives—tools that are more effective than ''willpower,'' ''leadership'' and other easier-said-than-done solutions. . . . For any effort at change to succeed, the Heaths argue, you have to ''shape the path.'' With Switch they have shaped a path that leads in a most promising direction.” —The Wall Street Journal

“Using the terminology of University of Virginia psychologist Jonathan Haidt, the Heaths designate the emotional side of the mind as the Elephant and the rational side as the Rider. . . .  Switch is crammed with stories…covering a number of fields to drive home the importance of using the strengths of both the Rider and the Elephant to make change happen. This could be a valuable read for the would-be change-makers of the Obama administration.” —Fort Worth Star-Telegram

“Whether you''re a manager, a parent or a civic leader, getting people to change can be tricky business. In Switch, brothers Chip and Dan Heath—authors of the bestselling Made to Stick—survey efforts to shape human behavior in search of what works. . . . Even when change isn''t easy, it''s often worth making.” —Time

“Dan and Chip Heath have done it again. . . . Any leader looking to create change in his organization need not look beyond this little book. It is packed with examples and hands-on tools that will get you moving right away. And it is really a fun read.” Business Week



About the Author

CHIP HEATH is a professor at the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University. He lives in Los Gatos, California. DAN HEATH is a senior fellow at Duke University''s Center for the Advancement of Social Entrepreneurship (CASE). He lives in Raleigh, North Carolina. The Heath brothers are the bestselling authors of Made to Stick and Switch. They write a regular column in  Fast Company magazine, and have appeared on  Today, NPR''s  Morning Edition, MSNBC, CNBC, and have been featured in  TimePeople and  US News and World Report.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

Chapter 1

The Three Surprises About Change

1.

One Saturday in 2000, some unsuspecting moviegoers showed up at a suburban theater in Chicago to catch a 1:05 P.M matinee of Mel Gibson''s action flick Payback. They were handed a soft drink and a free bucket of popcorn and asked to stick around after the movie to answer a few questions about the concession stand. These movie fans had unwittingly entered a study of irrational eating behavior.1

There was something unusual about the popcorn they received. It was wretched. In fact, it had been carefully engineered to be wretched. It''d been popped five days earlier and was so stale that it squeaked when you ate it. One moviegoer later compared it to Styrofoam packing peanuts, and two others, forgetting that they''d received the popcorn for free, demanded their money back.

Some of them got their free popcorn in a medium-sized bucket, and others got a large bucket--the sort of huge tub that looks like it might once have been an above-ground swimming pool. Everybody got their own individual bucket so there''d be no need to share. The researchers responsible for the study were interested in a simple question: Would the people with bigger buckets eat more?

Both buckets were designed to be so big that no one could finish their portion. So the actual research question was a bit more specific: Would somebody with a larger inexhaustible supply of popcorn eat more than someone with a smaller inexhaustible supply?

The sneaky researchers weighed the buckets before and after the movie, so they were able to measure precisely how much popcorn each person ate. The results were stunning: People with the large buckets ate 53 percent more popcorn than people with the medium size. That''s the equivalent of 173 more calories and approximately 21 extra hand-dips into the bucket.2

The author of the study, Brian Wansink, runs the Food and Brand Lab at Cornell University and he described the results in his book Mindless Eating: "We''ve run other popcorn studies, and the results were always the same, however we tweaked the details. It didn''t matter if our moviegoers were in Pennsylvania, Illinois, or Iowa, and it didn''t matter what kind of movie was showing; all of our popcorn studies led to the same conclusion. People eat more when you give them a bigger container. Period."

No other theory explains the behavior. These people weren''t eating for pleasure. (The popcorn was so stale it squeaked!) They weren''t driven by a desire to "finish their portion." (Both buckets were too big to finish.) It didn''t matter whether they were hungry or full. The equation is unyielding: Bigger container = more eating.

Best of all, people refused to believe the results. After the movie, the researchers told the moviegoers about the two bucket sizes and the findings of their past research. The researchers asked, do you think you ate more because of the larger size? The vast majority scoffed at the idea, saying things like, "Things like that don''t trick me," or "I''m pretty good at knowing when I''m full."

Whoops.

2.

Imagine that someone showed you the data from this study but didn''t mention the bucket sizes. On your data summary, you''d see how much popcorn each person ate. You could quickly scan the results and see the differences--some people ate a little bit of popcorn, some ate a lot, and some seem determined to test the physical limits of the human stomach. Armed with a data set like that, you would have found it easy to jump to conclusions. Some people in the world are Reasonable Snackers and others are Big Gluttons.

A public health expert, studying that data alongside you, would likely get very worried about the Gluttons. We need to motivate these people to adopt healthier snacking behaviors! Let''s find ways to show them the health hazards of eating so much! And maybe we should approach state legislators about a Big Bucket Ban!

But wait a second. If you want people to eat less popcorn, the solution is pretty simple: Just give them smaller buckets. You don''t have to worry about their knowledge or their attitudes.

You can see how easy it would be to turn an easy change problem (shrinking people''s buckets) into a hard change problem (influencing people''s motivation or understanding, or changing the law). And that''s the first surprise about change: What looks like a people problem is often a situation problem.

3.

This is a book to help you change things when change is hard. We''ll consider change at every level--individual, organizational, and societal. Maybe you want to help your brother beat his gambling addiction. Maybe you need your team at work to act more frugally because of market conditions. Maybe you wish more of your neighbors would bike to work.

Usually these topics are treated separately--there is "change management" advice for executives and "self-help advice" for individuals and "change the world" advice for activists. That''s a shame, because all change efforts have something in common: For anything to change, someone has to start acting differently. Your brother has got to stay out of the casino; your employees have got to start booking coach fares. Ultimately, all change efforts boil down to the same mission: Can you get people to start behaving in a new way?

We know what you''re thinking--people resist change. But it''s not quite that easy. Babies are born every day to parents who, inexplicably, welcomed the change. Think about the sheer magnitude of that change! Such an idea would never fly in the work world: Would anyone agree to work for a boss who''d wake you up twice a night, screaming, for trivial administrative duties? And what if, every time you wore a new piece of clothing, the boss spit up on it? Yet people don''t resist this massive change--they volunteer for it.

Enormous changes are all around us, and they often come voluntarily--not just babies, but marriages and new homes and new technologies and new job duties. Meanwhile, other behaviors are maddeningly intractable. Smokers keep smoking and kids grow fatter and your husband can''t ever seem to get his dirty shirts into a hamper.

So there are hard changes and easy changes. What distinguishes one from the other? In this book, we''ll argue that successful changes share a common pattern--they require the leader of the change to do three things at once. We''ve already seen the first of those three things: To change someone''s behavior, you''ve got to change their situation.

The situation isn''t the whole game, of course. An alcoholic might go dry in rehab, but what happens when they leave? Your sales reps might be hyper-productive when the sales manager shadows them, but what happens afterward? For someone''s behavior to change, you''ve got to influence not just their environment but their hearts and minds. The trick is this: Often the heart and mind disagree. Fervently.

4.

Consider the Clocky. It''s an alarm clock invited by an MIT student and now manufactured by Nanda Home. It''s no ordinary alarm clock--it has wheels. You set it at night and in the morning when the alarm goes off, it rolls off your nightstand and scurries around the room, forcing you to chase it down. Picture the scene: You''re crawling around the bedroom in your underwear, stalking and cursing a runaway clock.

Clocky ensures that you won''t snooze-button your way to disaster. And apparently that''s a common fear, since about 35,000 Clockys have sold, at $50 each, in its first 2 years on the market.

The success of this invention reveals a lot about our psychology. What it means, fundamentally, is that we are schizophrenic. Part of us--our rational side--wants to get up at 5:45 a.m., allowing plenty of time for a quick jog before we leave for the office. The other part of us--the emotional side--wakes up in the darkness of the early morning, snoozing inside a warm cocoon of sheets and blankets, and wants nothing in the world so much as a few more minutes of sleep. If, like us, your emotional side tends to win these internal debates, then you might be a potential Clocky customer. The beauty of the device is that it allows your rational side to outsmart your emotional side. It''s simply impossible to stay cuddled up under the covers when there''s a rogue alarm clock rolling around your room.

Let''s be blunt here: Clocky is not a product for a sane species. If Spock wants to get up at 5:45 a.m., he''ll just get up. No drama required.

Our built-in schizophrenia is a deeply weird thing, but we don''t think much about it, because we''re so used to it. When we kick off a new diet, we toss the Cheetohs and Oreos out of the pantry, because our rational side knows that when our emotional side gets a craving, there''s no hope of self-control. The only option is to remove the temptation altogether. (For the record, some MIT student will make a fortune designing Cheetohs that scurry away from people when they''re on a diet.)

The unavoidable conclusion is this: Your brain isn''t of one mind.

The conventional wisdom in psychology, in fact, is that our brains have two independent systems at work at all times. First, there''s what we called the emotional side. It''s the part of you that is instinctive, that feels pain and pleasure. Second, there''s the rational side, also known as the reflective or conscious system. It''s the part of you that deliberates and analyzes and looks into the future.

Psychologists have learned a lot about these two systems in the past few decades, but of course mankind has always been aware of the tension. Plato said that in our heads we''ve got a rational charioteer who has to rein in an unruly horse who "barely yields to horsewhip and goad combined." Freud wrote of the selfish id and the conscientious superego (and the ego who mediates between them). More recently behavioral economists have dubbed the two systems the Planner and the Doer.

But, to us, the duo''s tension was captured best by an analogy used by the University of Virginia psychologist Jonathan Haidt in his wonderful book The Happiness Hypothesis. Haidt said that our emotional side is an Elephant, and our rational side is its Rider. The Rider, perched atop the Elephant, holds the reins and seems to be the leader. The Rider''s control is precarious, though, because he''s so tiny relative to the Elephant. Anytime the 6-ton Elephant disagrees with the direction, the Rider is going to lose. He''s completely overmatched.

Most of us are all too familiar with situations where the Elephant overpowers our Rider. You''ve experienced this if you''ve ever: slept in, overeaten, dialed up your ex at midnight, procrastinated a report, tried to quit smoking and failed, skipped the gym, gotten angry and said something you regretted, abandoned your Spanish or jitterbug or piano lessons, refused to speak up in a meeting because you were scared, etc. Good thing no one is keeping score.

So the weakness of the Elephant, our emotional and instinctive side, is clear: It is lazy and skittish, often looking for the quick payoff (ice cream cone) over the long-term payoff (being thin). When change efforts fail, it''s usually the Elephant''s fault, since the kinds of change we want typically involve short-term sacrifices for long-term payoffs. (We cut back on expenses today to yield a better balance sheet next year. We avoid ice cream today for a better body next year.) Changes often fail because the Rider simply can''t keep the Elephant on the road long enough to reach the destination.

The Elephant''s weakness--the hunger for short-term _payoffs--is the mirror image of the Rider''s strength, which is the ability to think long-term, to plan, to think beyond the moment. (All those things that your pet can''t do.)

But what may surprise you is that the Elephant also has enormous strengths and that the Rider has crippling weaknesses. The Elephant isn''t always the bad guy. Emotion is the Elephant''s turf--love and compassion and sympathy and loyalty. That fierce instinct you have to protect your kids against harm--that''s the Elephant. That spine-stiffening you feel when you need to stand up for yourself--that''s the Elephant.

Just as important, the Elephant is the one who gets things done. To make progress toward a goal, whether it''s noble or crass, requires the energy and drive of the Elephant. This strength is the mirror image of the Rider''s great weakness: spinning his wheels. The Rider tends to over-analyze and overthink things. If you''ve ever met someone who can agonize for 20 minutes about what to eat for dinner, or if you''ve had a manager who could brainstorm about new ideas for hours but never seemed to get around to doing anything, you''ve met the Rider.

The challenge of a change agent is to appeal to both. If you reach the Riders of your team but not the Elephants, they''ll have understanding without motivation. If you reach their Elephants but not their Riders, they''ll have passion without direction. In both cases, their flaws can be paralyzing--a reluctant Elephant and a wheel-spinning Rider can both ensure that nothing changes. But when they are moving together, change can come easily.

5.

It''s not easy to achieve balance between the Rider and the Elephant, because change creates tension between them. When we change, we abandon behaviors that are comfortable and automatic in favor of new behaviors that are less familiar. Because they are less familiar, they require careful supervision by the Rider, who must lead the Elephant down an unfamiliar trail. Think of how we feel "on guard" when meeting new people, as compared with our effortless interactions with old friends. One set of behaviors is conscious and stage-managed ("Soooo nice to meet you!") and the other is natural, unconscious. When we change, we replace unconscious behaviors with conscious ones, and that can be exhausting. To see what we mean, we want to invite you to participate in a famous psychology experiment called the Stroop Test.

The Stroop Test is simple enough: On the next page, you''re going to see a list of words. (Please note--the color version of the test will only appear in the finished book. To see the test in color, go to http://www.madetostick.com/resources/stroop.pdf.) Your job is simply to say, aloud, the color of each word in the list. For instance, if you saw these three words_._._._

HAT____CAT____BLACK

._._._you''d say, "Black, Black, Black," since all three are printed in black ink. (Please do say the words aloud to get the full effect. If you''re in public, people will just think you''re talking on a really, really tiny cell phone.) Flip the page when you''re ready.

STOP    GO      DOG

FISH    FROG    JUICE

GREEN   RED     BLACK

BLUE    GREEN   ORANGE

RED     BLACK   GREEN

GREEN   BLUE    BLACK

RED     GREEN   BLUE

GREEN   RED     ORANGE

BLUE    RED     BLUE

It felt pretty easy at first, didn''t it? When the word and the color were the same, it was effortless. But then came the roadblock--the word "GREEN," which was printed in orange. Suddenly, your progress slowed.

People who take the Stroop Test perform pretty consistently. Once they hit that first roadblock, their answer speed is essentially cut in half. That''s because a behavior that was automatic suddenly becomes conscious. When you hit the orange-colored word "GREEN," your brain calls a supervisor on duty, whose job is to examine each word carefully and separate GREEN-the-Word from Orange-Its-Color and serve up the word "Orange" to your lips.

Notice something remarkable: Your 3-year-old son or nephew, who can''t read, could easily outperform you on this test, because he wouldn''t have to call a supervisor. (Indeed, you''d do well if you took the Stroop Test in Chinese--you wouldn''t recognize the symbols, so they couldn''t throw you off.)

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4.6 out of 54.6 out of 5
3,175 global ratings

Top reviews from the United States

Andrew Knight
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Excellent "business" book that has implications for your real life, too
Reviewed in the United States on June 7, 2016
I am by no means a big fan of "business books". Most feel like they''re thrown together quickly and read like dirge. I was pleasantly surprised by Switch -- which both reads easily and is absolutely relevant to the problems we all face in our work (and personal)... See more
I am by no means a big fan of "business books". Most feel like they''re thrown together quickly and read like dirge. I was pleasantly surprised by Switch -- which both reads easily and is absolutely relevant to the problems we all face in our work (and personal) lives. It breaks down the process of change into three easily-remembered and compelling constructs, and gives lots of practical examples for each construct. I found myself incorporating the concepts from Switch into my daily activities immediately, and my zeal for the model hasn''t diminished over the past couple of months (the typical half-life of a business book is days in my experience).

If you deal with change in any aspect of your life -- this is an excellent book. If you think you *don''t* deal with change -- you''re probably not paying attention!
56 people found this helpful
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Daniil
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Change is hard unless you read this book
Reviewed in the United States on May 1, 2017
Change is hard. Any change. Everywhere. In business, in personal life. "Switch" is a blueprint to change. Any change. In any environment. The book is condensed wisdom on how to change. It''s deeply rooted in psychology, yet written in a simple, effective... See more
Change is hard. Any change. Everywhere. In business, in personal life.

"Switch" is a blueprint to change. Any change. In any environment. The book is condensed wisdom on how to change. It''s deeply rooted in psychology, yet written in a simple, effective language so anybody could understand and apply it.

"Switch" gives you not only theory but also real life examples of people changing when change is hard.

If you want to change something in your life - the "Switch" is your ultimate guide.
26 people found this helpful
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Joseph Colannino
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Review by J. Colannino
Reviewed in the United States on December 2, 2012
Switch is a book about managing change by the Heath brothers (Chip and Dan). Chip is a professor at the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University and Dan is a Senior Fellow at Duke University'' Social Entrepreneurship center. The two have teamed up before -- in 2007... See more
Switch is a book about managing change by the Heath brothers (Chip and Dan). Chip is a professor at the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University and Dan is a Senior Fellow at Duke University'' Social Entrepreneurship center. The two have teamed up before -- in 2007 they released their critically acclaimed Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die. This latest effort focuses less on the stickiness of the idea and more on the change process itself. What should a change agent do to implement lasting change in a hard-headed organization that desperately needs it?

The book is organized into eleven chapters in three parts: Part 1, Direct the Rider; Part 2, Motivate the Elephant; and Part 3, Shape the Path. The titles come from a vivid metaphor by University of Virginia psychologist Jonathan Haidt. In his book, The Happiness Hypothesis, Haidt likens a person to a rider on an elephant. The rider is the rational side of a person: the part that tells him to eat better, exercise more, and stop procrastinating, for example. The elephant is the emotional side that doesn''t want to work to lose weight or exercise and would rather stay put; let''s say willpower vs. won''t-power; but why should that be? Whatever is autonomous and ingrained by habit belongs to the elephant. The rider is theoretically in control, but it is exhausting to continually tug on the reins and direct the stubborn elephant. Eventually the rider relents and the elephant goes back to doing what he''s always done. Sound familiar?

Before going much farther, you should know that two things separate Switch from so many other glib books about change: first, the book has a very solid psychological basis. Despite its accessible style, scores of major psychological findings and studies are reported and undergird the book''s practical formulae for change. Second, Switch is not a self-help book. I have no doubt that the book could be used in this way, but it is really a book about how to change things. It is primarily directed toward organizational change, though its principles are much broader. And there are many surprises.

The first big surprise occurs in the very first chapter.

"We know what you''re thinking -- people resist change. But it''s not quite that easy. Babies are born every day to parents who, inexplicably, welcome that change. Yet people don''t resist this massive change -- they volunteer for it. In our lives we embrace lots of big changes. So there are hard changes and there are easy changes. What distinguishes one from the other?"

And the surprises keep coming. Like the two researchers who dramatically and permanently got folks to reduce their saturated fat intake. Or the doctor who saved over 100,000 lives and counting in American hospitals on schedule (18 months) by getting thousands of doctors and organizations to change their practices. Or the American who went to Vietnam and changed the face of malnutrition. Or the student who saved an endangered species in a Caribbean country that didn''t give two hoots about it.

What do all these stories have in common? For one, none of these change agents had the sufficient budget or authority to succeed; yet, they did. How? Every one of them gave clear rational direction to the rider by finding the bright spots, scripting the critical moves, and clearly pointing to the end goal. All of them motivated the elephant by emotionally connecting with it, and they shrunk the apparent change by carefully communicating progress. They refused to underestimate their people. Instead they provided them with a newfound identity that let them to grow into the challenge. But there was more.

As the authors note, many times what looks like resistance is really confusion or even the result of misaligned incentives. That''s why the path needs to be shaped by making manageable changes to the environment, building sound habits, rallying the herd, and reinforcing the new habit until it becomes a way of life.

Well, maybe that sounds like a lot of work. I think it is. But speaking from firsthand experience, it will be a labor of love. And if your heart is not in the change and you do not think you can derive reward from the process, perhaps you are selling yourself short -- or, maybe you''re the wrong person to lead the change and you should stop kidding yourself. And perhaps that is what I like most about this book. It does not promise a panacea. It tells it like it is without the jingoism that has become the substance of many change management essays. If you are leading organizational change, the book will provide a solid prescription for achieving lasting results because Switch uses real research, reports real experiences, and provides real guidance. Here, my recommendation is enthusiastic.
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curtismchale
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Great read to learn how to make changes when it''s hard
Reviewed in the United States on March 12, 2015
Ever want to loose weight and you’re like me you love chocolate chip cookies? You love them so much that your 4 year old calls you the cookie monster. Are you responsible for some change in your company but don’t really have the power to make that change? Maybe... See more
Ever want to loose weight and you’re like me you love chocolate chip cookies? You love them so much that your 4 year old calls you the cookie monster.

Are you responsible for some change in your company but don’t really have the power to make that change? Maybe you’re in charge but the entrenched ethic/patterns are totally contrary to the change that needs to be made?

This is the book for you.

Chip and Dan Heath explore how many organizations made the Rider (our thinking brain) and the Elephant (our feeling brain) both adopt a change. You’ll see this 2 brain thinking explored in other books like Thinking, Fast and Slow.

In Switch Chip and Dan assert that our Rider is going to generally go where the Elephant wants to. With great effort it can overpower the Elephant for a short time (like when I swear off cookies) but eventually the much more powerful Elephant will win as the Rider gets tired.

Switch doesn’t claim to give you all the answers to make effective change at your organization, it does give you lots of great stories and examples of how others made change and then pulls out practical application you can use to help make changes in your organization.

One of the best takeaways is to make change easy. Don’t give a big overarching change policy. Give clear concise easy to carry out directions. If you’re looking to cut short term costs because you have no money maybe that direction is “We’ll always choose the cheapest option even if the long term cost is more”.

With that direction all purchasers have a clear direction when making any purchasing decision.

There are many more great takeaways in Switch and I highly recommend you read it.
24 people found this helpful
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O. Halabieh
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Understanding The Fundamentals of Change!
Reviewed in the United States on December 1, 2013
Below are key excerpts from the book that I found particularly insightful: 1) "What looks like a people problem is often a situation problem." 2) "Now you''ve had a glimpse of the basic three-part framework we will unpack in this book, one... See more
Below are key excerpts from the book that I found particularly insightful:

1) "What looks like a people problem is often a situation problem."

2) "Now you''ve had a glimpse of the basic three-part framework we will unpack in this book, one that can guide you in any situation where you need to change behavior: 1) Direct the Rider. What looks like resistance is often a lack of clarity. So provide crystal-clear direction. 2) Motivate the Elephant. What looks like laziness is often exhaustion. The Rider can''t get his way by force for very long. So it''s critical that you engage people''s emotional side—get their Elephants on the path and cooperative. 3) Shape the Path. What looks like a people problem is often a situation problem. We call the situation (including the surrounding environment) the "Path." When you shape the Path, you make change more likely, no matter what''s happening with the Rider and Elephant."

3) "The Miracle Question doesn''t ask you to describe the miracle itself; it asks you to identify the tangible signs that the miracle happened...Once they''ve helped patients identify specific and vivid signs of progress, they pivot to a second question, which is perhaps even more important. It''s the Exception Question: "When was the last time you saw a little bit of the miracle, even just for a short time?""

4) "Big problems are rarely solved with commensurately big solutions. Instead, they are most often solved by a sequence of small solutions, sometimes over weeks, sometimes over decades. And this asymmetry is why the Rider''s predilection for analysis can backfire so easily. When the Rider analyzes a problem, he seeks a solution that befits the scale of it. If the Rider spots a hole, he wants to fill it, and if he''s got a round hole with a 24-inch diameter, he''s gonna go looking for a 24-inch peg. But that mental model is wrong."

5) "Ambiguity is the enemy. Any successful change requires a translation of ambiguous goals into concrete behaviors. In short, to make a switch, you need to script the critical moves."

6) "In creating change, though, we we''re interested in goals that are closer at hand—the kinds of things that can be tackled by parents or middle managers or social activists. We want a goal that can be tackled in months or years, not decades. We want what we might call a destination postcard—a vivid picture from the near-term future that shows what could be possible."

7) "The Rider''s strengths are substantial, and his flaws can be mitigated. When you appeal to the Rider inside yourself or inside others you are trying to influence, your game plan should be simple...First, follow the bright spots...Next, give direction to the Rider."

8) "Kotter and Cohen observed that, in almost all successful change efforts, the sequence of change is not ANALYZE-THINK-CHANGE, but rather SEE-FEEL-CHANGE. You''re presented with evidence that makes you feel something. It might be a disturbing look at the problem, or a hopeful glimpse of the solution, or a sobering reflection of your current habits, but regardless, it''s something that hits you at the emotional level. It''s something that speaks to the Elephant."

9) " Most of the big problems we encounter in organizations or society are ambiguous and evolving. They don''t look like burning platform situations, where we need people to buckle down and execute a hard but well-understood game plan. To solve bigger, more ambiguous problems, we need to encourage open minds, creativity, and hope."

10) " In the identity model of decision making, we essentially ask ourselves three questions when we have a decision to make: Who am I? What kind of situation is this? What would someone like me do in this situation? Notice what''s missing: any calculation of costs and benefits. The identity model explains the way most people vote, which contradicts our notion of the "self-interested voter.""

11) "That''s the paradox of the growth mindset. Although it seems to draw attention to failure, and in fact encourages us to seek out failure, it is unflaggingly optimistic. We will struggle, we will fail we will be knocked down—but throughout, well get better, and we''ll succeed in the end."

12) "Change isn''t an event; it''s a process. There is no moment when a monkey learns to skateboard; there''s a process. There is no moment when a. a child learns to walk; there''s a process. And there won''t be a moment when your community starts to invest more in its school system, or starts recycling more, or starts to beautify its public spaces; there will be a process. To lead a process requires persistence. A long journey requires lots of mango."
31 people found this helpful
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Victor D. Manriquez
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Some innovative way to tal about change management
Reviewed in the United States on January 12, 2020
Not so impressive as “Made to stick” but this book has some interesting points about a different and innovative way to talk about the “Change management”, one of the hurdles in an organization. The analogy about the “rider”, “elephant” and “path” could be useful in some... See more
Not so impressive as “Made to stick” but this book has some interesting points about a different and innovative way to talk about the “Change management”, one of the hurdles in an organization. The analogy about the “rider”, “elephant” and “path” could be useful in some situations. Maybe the book is too long in order to support and reinforce the concepts exposed, but it merits to take a look to it.
2 people found this helpful
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Alex W White
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Designers define and solve problems. Switch helps make the process of change understandable and easier.
Reviewed in the United States on June 23, 2017
“As a second-semester graduate student, “Switch” by Chip and Dan Heath has been one of the more informative, and enjoyable books I have read of the eight books we’re read thus far. Switch describes three critical directives to implement change through clear examples. By... See more
“As a second-semester graduate student, “Switch” by Chip and Dan Heath has been one of the more informative, and enjoyable books I have read of the eight books we’re read thus far. Switch describes three critical directives to implement change through clear examples. By directing the rider (our rational side), motivating the elephant (our emotional side) and shaping the path (change the situation), one can achieve real change.” – Graduate student comment. Switch was used as a required text in the graduate Design Management program at the Shintaro Akatsu School of Design at the University of Bridgeport
6 people found this helpful
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Adam W.
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Really helpful with change at work and at home
Reviewed in the United States on November 23, 2020
This is a fantastic book for helping facilitate change. The authors combined a lot of different sources together. So it''s not original thoughts by the authors, but a whole bunch of ideas put together. I''ve used this at work and at home. There''s a cheat-sheet... See more
This is a fantastic book for helping facilitate change. The authors combined a lot of different sources together. So it''s not original thoughts by the authors, but a whole bunch of ideas put together.

I''ve used this at work and at home. There''s a cheat-sheet you can download from their site as well. At work, we talk about "motivating your elephant" and we now have a "bright spots" call-out in our team meetings. I feel it''s been really helpful to use these concepts and ideas as we''ve gone through major changes in our lives due to the events of 2020.

Overall, it''s a great book and has a lot of practical ideas.
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Top reviews from other countries

ANON
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
WOW Really inspirational & has many implications on how to live your life
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 18, 2013
I was recommended this book and so glad I was. I can see how I can apply the philosophy in my personal and professional life. Indeed the books website helps you shift your focus to read with a personal point of view or work. However, I found so many aha moments that I had...See more
I was recommended this book and so glad I was. I can see how I can apply the philosophy in my personal and professional life. Indeed the books website helps you shift your focus to read with a personal point of view or work. However, I found so many aha moments that I had to scribble in a lot of margins and underscore many very true statements - I haven''t read a book that dragged me in so much in a few months. I understand much clearer why ''head office'' had declared dramatic changes and nothings happened and how inspirational Area Managers say one sentence and its motivated the whole team. Now I can do the same for my own little posse and hope to gain their full backing for changes I want to make. Personally, I feel there is a clearer path towards gaining a happy and more fulfilled life; how I can inspire a teenager to tidy their room or do the washing up, how I can achieve chores without it being a chore, or even how I can exercise more without the excuses - now that is worth the book price in its own right! You shouldn''t just read this book, you should digest and think and revisit. You should give yourself time to make notes, set a plan and try a new way of living/working. The writing style is understandable, humorous and thought provoking.
15 people found this helpful
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Stephen Green
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Switched on
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on August 15, 2013
This is a clever, inspirational book which works on a number of levels. It is an easy and accessible book which demonstrates success in a wide variety of spheres, often achieved with scant resources, which offers a methodology that can be repeated by ordinary people as well...See more
This is a clever, inspirational book which works on a number of levels. It is an easy and accessible book which demonstrates success in a wide variety of spheres, often achieved with scant resources, which offers a methodology that can be repeated by ordinary people as well as leaders. It is not particularly or exclusively a business book. It is for anybody who sees a situation and contemplates how it can be changed, even down to the behaviour moderation of one individual, or even the person that looks at you through the mirror each day. Teachers, nurses, community leaders or concerned citizens could all relate to the content and imagine new possibilities. On the level of entertainment the book is similar to Superfreakonomics: Global Cooling, Patriotic Prostitutes and Why Suicide Bombers Should Buy Life Insurance. The book has amusing quips and turns of phrase that lightens the subject matter from that of a text book. Yet the book is fully referenced with study, research and quotation information, should the reader wish to get into more depth. I know that some people who read these reviews have already read the book and are curious about what other people think. Therefore I will list some of my personal highlights of the book. I hope for those considering the book it will also ignite curiosity. I liked exhaustible self control, 424 gloves, 1% milk. Bright spots. A husband forgets his wife''s birthday. Miner county. No dry holes. Where did you find six dumb people? Attila the accountant. Rock bottom. The burning platform. Loyalty cards. 5 minute room rescue. Money makeover. A miracle scale. Brasilata. Safe driving. Fundamental Attribution Error. Saints and jerks. Sterile cockpit. Mike Romano. The humble checklist. Designated driver. Fataki the sugar-daddy. The skateboarding monkey. I hope this gives you an idea of the way that an amusing anecdote becomes a powerful and memorable learning. The variety of these techniques is best appreciated at the end of the book. There is a summary of change-making examples at the end of the book changing the book into a manual for change rather than just a passive read. The authors summarize all the techniques you could deploy, if you haven''t just skipped to the end. It is a great reminder that this is not just a collection of stories or examples but part of a collection of strategies that are repeatable in your own context. This book contains a perfect recipe for turning what is and what could be from fantasy to reality.
4 people found this helpful
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Pete
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
A good guide to change, especially for large organisations
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 9, 2011
Switch is a book that contains a wealth of information, both in terms of leading research into exacting change and also practical tips on how to implement that research. It is filled with case studies and examples of success stories, and whatever your particular area of...See more
Switch is a book that contains a wealth of information, both in terms of leading research into exacting change and also practical tips on how to implement that research. It is filled with case studies and examples of success stories, and whatever your particular area of change is, you are bound to find one that is a close match. Most of the premise of the book centres around the notion of the elephant-and-rider metaphor, and how people often attribute failed change to the wrong causes. In this regard, the central message of the book is fairly short, however it is explored in great detail which helps avoid the facets being overlooked. It is written in an easily accessible style, and strikes a good balance between the formal and informal approach. Personally, I felt it was possibly a little long, and it wasn''t a book that ''grabbed'' me as some others have. However, the information contained in its pages is worth the investment, and touches onto areas of social and behavioural psychology outside of its core remit of bringing about change. It is a highly practical book, clearly written for an audience who are movers and shakers themselves. One thing to note is that the book takes the professional and ethical approach to manipulating others, so don''t expect clever NLP routines to bamboozle your friends into doing what you want: this is a book about changing workplaces, businesses, groups and governments, and doing so for the long-term. It is not a book of quick-fixes by any means. But this is good, as it shows that the authors are treating their subject seriously, and regard change as something that needs buy-in from all involved, not be force-fed to a reluctant or unaware audience. Derren Brown this is not. I would recommend this book to anyone who works in or with an establishment which seems reluctant to "understand" or "appreciate" why change is necessary. You will learn that usually it is not the people who are at fault, but the collective situation they find themselves in. Then the book will teach you how to address that.
16 people found this helpful
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SarahB
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
1small step can bring about a great leat
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 14, 2015
I absolutely loved this book. I bought it to help change personal habits and have ended up finding so many solutions to a big change management project at work. It''s beautifully written with a light touch and gentle wit, which makes it easy to imagine implementing the...See more
I absolutely loved this book. I bought it to help change personal habits and have ended up finding so many solutions to a big change management project at work. It''s beautifully written with a light touch and gentle wit, which makes it easy to imagine implementing the strategies discussed. I found myself thinking of ways I could use the insights immediately and was enthused and excited to try them out - I never thought I would say that about a''text'' book, though this is a very relaxing read. I have been extolling it to colleagues and friends. Everyone should read this book. It has strategies that I will return to time and time again.
2 people found this helpful
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Amazon Customer
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Good read
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on March 1, 2020
I really enjoyed this book, but it felt like it was going on a little bit tooo much. There were ALOT of case studies. For some that might be good, but for me, I could’ve still learnt the same if there weren’t as many case studies. The brothers wrote this book brilliantly...See more
I really enjoyed this book, but it felt like it was going on a little bit tooo much. There were ALOT of case studies. For some that might be good, but for me, I could’ve still learnt the same if there weren’t as many case studies. The brothers wrote this book brilliantly and I already have The Power it Moments’ which is next on my list to read.
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Switch: sale How high quality to Change Things When Change Is Hard sale

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