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How to Get People to Do Stuff

Basically understanding the psychology of what motivated people to take action.

Some interesting bits:

  • If you use nouns when making a request, rather than verbs – for example: “Be a donor” versus “Donate now” – it results in more people taking action. That’s because nouns invoke group identity. (people want to feel they belong)
  • Use the science of habits to help other people create or change habits, so you can get them to do stuff.
  • An important part of getting someone to create a new habit is to break things into really small steps.
  • If you want consistent behavior don’t reward people every time they do something, just some of the time.
  • Giving people autonomy over what they are doing will stimulate them to master a skill and will motivate them to work harder.
  • Don’t mix praise with feedback if you want to stimulate the desire for mastery. Just give objective feedback.
  • If you mention money then people become more independent and less willing to help others.
  • People are more likely to do something if you can get them to phrase it as a question to themselves (Will I exercise each week?) than if you get them to say a declarative statement (I will exercise each week.)



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