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Review: Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion

Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion
Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion by Robert B. Cialdini
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Throughout my career, Robert B Cialdini’s Influence book has been referred to me countless times. It is one of those books where its content is timeless and applicable to many facets of our lives (including both personal and work). Although written in 1984, it has survived the test of times and attempts to answer the question of why and how we are influenced.

Cialdini’s book is longer than the average “How-To” book; due to all of the anecdotes and examples provided. The book takes you through the journey of the six key weapons of influence (see below) and goes into quite a low level of detail. Thoroughly recommend this book to anyone as a foundational read on psychology and influence. This is the second time I have read this book and I know it will not be the last time I pick it up.

Three key takeaways from the book:
1. The 6 key weapons of Influence are:
○ Reciprocation
○ Consistency
○ Social Proof
○ Liking
○ Authority
○ Scarcity
2. When we decide to make a choice we ultimately encounter pressure that will drive us to stay consistent with that commitment (even if we are wrong)
3. We are typically more motivated when it comes to losing something rather than in actually gaining something of equal value

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