- [00:07] In today’s episode I’m introducing you to Dr. Eric J. Johnson, author of the brand new book, The Elements of Choice.
- [03:57] Eric shares his background and how he got into the field. His research has always been about helping people make choices and how the way we present information to them affects their choices.
- [05:40] He was fascinated with the choices he observed people making.
- [07:06] Eric shares research from a former student of his. She implemented the health records systems at a major New York hospital.
- [09:18] Memory played an important role in the doctor’s behavior in her research.
- [11:31] When you put in the time to plan the architecture upfront, the actual intention itself can be very small. Designers often have more influence than they realize.
- [12:42] He shares his research about taking different doors at the Copenhagen airport.
- [14:06] Little bits of effort at the beginning of the decision have an influence throughout the course of the decision. Choice architecture usually works by favoring one path over another.
- [16:10] If I know exactly what you want I would give you just one option, but the person making the choice knows a lot about themselves so they often know more about what they want.
- [18:10] There is a trade-off between how much you are asking of people (in terms of deciding) and how much variety you need to give them so they can find the option that is best for them.
- [20:45] Choice is not determined by myself and my preferences alone.
- [21:38] We are all designers all the time.
- [23:14] Order will have an influence depending on your medium. There are many other things as a designer to think about also.
- [24:50] Defaults are powerful. Eric and Dan Goldstein researched defaults in organ donations.
- [27:07] Not all situations are the same, so you really need to look across all the studies and understand your own situation and context.
- [28:44] Our preferences aren’t written in stone. We have many preferences. Depending on what comes to mind, I might make different choices.
- [29:36] Eric shares one of his favorite studies where they ask people about climate change and would they pay a carbon tax (or carbon offset) to fight climate change.
- [32:26] One study is not enough to actually build a science. We need to do cross studies.
- [35:16] Eric shares how choice architecture can affect COVID vaccinations.
- [38:00] Defaults work because they endow you with the option. You think less about the disadvantages.
- [39:26] The decisions of our privacy and cookies are decisions we make multiple times a day.
- [41:46] Melina shares a study about trying to influence people to take the stairs instead of riding the elevator.
- [43:31] Defaults are everywhere. They save us effort by not having to make a decision every time.
- [46:16] Melina shares her closing thoughts.
- [47:44] The more you know about someone, the fewer choices you can provide to them. When you have no idea who your customer is – what they like, what the context is of them finding you, why they are there, what needs they are looking to fill or problems they need to solve, you then have to present a whole bunch of choices, which can make it harder for them to make a decision.
- [50:33] Melina’s award-winning first book, What Your Customer Wants and Can’t Tell You is available on Amazon, Bookshop, Barnes & Noble, Book Depository, and Booktopia.
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Get the Books Mentioned on (or related to) this Episode:
- The Elements of Choice: Why the Way We Decide Matters By Eric J. Johnson
- Subtract: The Untapped Science of Less By Leidy Klotz
- How to Change: The Science of Getting from Where You Are to Where You Want to Be By Katy Milkman
- Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness By Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein
- The Paradox of Choice: Why More Is Less By Barry Schwartz
Connect with Eric:
Past Episodes & Other Important Links:
- Episode 162: Do You Subtract Enough? An interview with Dr. Leidy Klotz
- Episode 151: How To Change, an interview Dr. Katy Milkman
- Episode 35: NUDGES & Choice Architecture: Introducing Nobel-Winning Concepts: A Behavioral Economics Foundations Episode
- Episode 171: Paradox of Choice: Why More is Less, a Behavioral Economics Foundations Episode
- Episode 38: Defaults: The “D” in NUDGES: A Behavioral Economics Foundations Episode: A Behavioral Economics Foundations Episode
- Episode 20: Defaults: Why The Pre-Selected Choice Wins More Often Than Not: A Behavioral Economics Foundations Episode
- Episode 61: Color Theory: When It Comes To Color, This 1 Thing Matters More Than Anything Else
- Episode 18: Priming: Why You Should Never Have A Difficult Conversation With Someone Holding An Iced Coffee: A Behavioral Economics Foundations Episode
- Episode 16: Framing: How You Say Things Matter More Than What You’re Saying: A Behavioral Economics Foundations Episode
- Episode 36: Incentives – The “N” In NUDGES: A Behavioral Economics Foundations Episode: A Behavioral Economics Foundations Episode
- Episode 139: Endowment Effect: Why We Like Our Stuff More, a Behavioral Economics Foundations Episode
- Functional Fixedness – coming soon!
- False Consensus Effect – coming soon!
- Illusion of Control – coming soon!
- Not Invented Here Syndrome – coming soon!
- Ostrich Effect – coming soon!
- Normalcy Bias – coming soon!