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Made to Stick: Why some ideas take hold and others come unstuck [Paperback]

Dan Heath , Chip Heath
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (63 customer reviews)
RRP: 7.99
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Book Description

7 Feb 2008

What is that makes urban myths so persistent but many everyday truths so eminently forgettable? How do newspapers set about ensuring that their headlines make you want to read on? And why do we remember complicated stories but not complicated facts?

In the course of over ten years of study, Chip and Dan Heath have established what it is that determines whether particular ideas or stories stick in our minds or not, and Made to Stick is the fascinating outcome of their painstaking research. Packed full of case histories and thought-provoking anecdotes, it shows, among other things, how one Australian scientist convinced the world he'd discovered the cause of stomach ulcers by drinking a glass filled with bacteria, how a gifted sports reporter got people to watch a football match by showing them the outside of the stadium, and how high-concept pitches such as 'Jaws on a spaceship' (Alien) and 'Die Hard on a bus' (Speed) convince movie executives to invest vast sums of money in a project on the basis of almost no information.

Entertaining and informative by turns, this is a fascinating and multi-faceted account of a key area of human behaviour. At the same time, by showing how we can all use such cleverly devised strategies as the 'Velcro Theory of Memory' and 'curiosity gaps', it offers superbly practical insights, setting out principles we all can adopt to make sure that we get our ideas across effectively.


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Made to Stick: Why some ideas take hold and others come unstuck + Switch: How to change things when change is hard + Decisive: How to Make Better Decisions
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Product details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Arrow (7 Feb 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 009950569X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0099505693
  • Product Dimensions: 2.3 x 12.5 x 19 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (63 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,218 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

"Their analysis is peppered with memorable stories, images and facts ... This book is a gift to anyone who needs to get a message across and make it stick" (New Statesman)

"This is great for anyone planning a speech or trying to get their message across at work" (Psychologies)

"The Heaths push beyond what sounds like it should work and explain why it actually does" (Time Magazine)

"... an entertaining, practical guide to effective communication." (Publishers Weekly)

"Smart, lively . . . such fun to read" (Saturday Guardian)

Book Description

A bestselling communications book that helps ensure what you say is understood, remembered and, most importantly, acted upon

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
68 of 72 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Compelling reading - I got stuck to this book! 12 Sep 2008
By Alex
Format:Paperback
I can't believe I'm the first person to review this book!

It's a shame that this book hasn't found a wider audience. I have seen this book positioned in book shops as a 'business' book. But it's actually a book that is appropriate for absolutely anyone who wants to know how to create more compelling messages. You could be a teacher who wants to make your lessons more memorable or a student who wants to understand what makes urban legends so virally believable.

The authors really practise what they preach. Not only do they tell you how to make your messages more 'sticky' and memorable, but they have written a book that applies their learnings. A great read - thoroughly recommended! So much so that I feel compelled to write a review - so please forgive me as this is my first ever review!
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66 of 72 people found the following review helpful
By Donald Mitchell HALL OF FAME TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Hardcover
This is the best book about communications I've read since I discovered Stephen Denning's work on telling business stories. I highly recommend Made to Stick to all those who want to get their messages across in business more effectively.

Imagine if people remembered what you had to say and acted on it. Wouldn't that be great? What if people not only remembered and acted, but told hundreds of others who also acted and told? Now you're really getting somewhere!

Brothers Chip (an educational consultant and publisher) and Dan (a professor of organizational behavior at Stanford Business School) Heath combine to develop Malcolm Gladwell's point about "stickiness" in The Tipping Point. To help you understand what they have in mind, the book opens with the hoary urban tale of the man who ends up in a bathtub packed with ice missing his kidney after accepting a drink from a beautiful woman. That story, while untrue, has virtually universal awareness. Many other untrue stories do, too, especially those about what someone found in a fast food meal.

The brothers Heath put memorable and quickly forgotten information side-by-side to make the case for six factors (in combination) making the difference between what's memorable and what isn't. The six factors are:

1. Simplicity (any idea over one is too many)

2. Unexpectedness (a surprise grabs our attention)

3. Concreteness (the more dimensions of details the more hooks our minds use to create a memory)

4. Credibility (even untrue stories don't stick unless there's a hint of truth, such as beware of what's too good to be true in the urban legend that opens the book)

5.
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent book for teachers, too 22 Feb 2009
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I'd recommend this book to any teacher - it's probably 110% more useful than any of the text books you were told to read on your teacher training course!

It's very readable. This is important because teachers (and that includes me) are too busy to find time to wade though dense theoretical texts. Secondly, and this probably shouldn't be surprising given what the book's about, it draws you in and the ideas contained within it are very easy to remember.

The job of a teacher is to explain sometimes really quite tricky ideas in short, sharp chunks, to people who are not always expecially engaged (i.e. teenagers), and then get them to use those ideas. This book explains very neatly how to do that more effectively. The authors' SUCCESs mnemonic (simple, unexpected, concrete, credentialed, emotional, story) is well illustrated and explained in the book and is very easy to remember and apply. Highly recommended.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An Exercise in Stickiness 8 Jun 2011
By John M. Ford TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Kindle Edition
Really quick--before you have time to think--grab a pen and a pad of yellow sticky notes. Yes, they have to be yellow. Write down the following six principles of memorable messages:

1. Simplicity
2. Unexpectedness
3. Concreteness
4. Credibility
5. Emotional
6. Stories

It's a shame you're not in a bookstore right now--you could just tear the definitions right off of the dust jacket. Never mind. Now give yourself a moment to let your irritation pass at the cuteness of the first letters spelling out "success." There it goes. Not so bad, really. No worse than some of those sales management acronyms.

Now put this sticky note up where you work. And think about it for a day or two. Then read this book. I'm not saying buy it, necessarily. But read it. It will help you make your messages mighty and memorable. Tell people I said so. Yell it at them if you have to.
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34 of 39 people found the following review helpful
By Donald Mitchell HALL OF FAME TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Hardcover
This is the best book about communications I've read since I discovered Stephen Denning's work on telling business stories. I highly recommend Made to Stick to all those who want to get their messages across in business more effectively.

Imagine if people remembered what you had to say and acted on it. Wouldn't that be great? What if people not only remembered and acted, but told hundreds of others who also acted and told? Now you're really getting somewhere!

Brothers Chip (an educational consultant and publisher) and Dan (a professor of organizational behavior at Stanford Business School) Heath combine to develop Malcolm Gladwell's point about "stickiness" in The Tipping Point. To help you understand what they have in mind, the book opens with the hoary urban tale of the man who ends up in a bathtub packed with ice missing his kidney after accepting a drink from a beautiful woman. That story, while untrue, has virtually universal awareness. Many other untrue stories do, too, especially those about what someone found in a fast food meal.

The brothers Heath put memorable and quickly forgotten information side-by-side to make the case for six factors (in combination) making the difference between what's memorable and what isn't. The six factors are:

1. Simplicity (any idea over one is too many)

2. Unexpectedness (a surprise grabs our attention)

3. Concreteness (the more dimensions of details the more hooks our minds use to create a memory)

4. Credibility (even untrue stories don't stick unless there's a hint of truth, such as beware of what's too good to be true in the urban legend that opens the book)

5.
Read more ›
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Some very interesting psychological information is contained in this...
Some very interesting psychological information is contained in this book, but I felt it did not have enough structure. Read more
Published 7 days ago by Steve Watson
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting and Informative
The authors are brothers who work in different areas of education where the goal is to make ideas stick. Read more
Published 17 days ago by GeordieReader
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Easy read, entertaining to hear and engaging to listen to! Great book, great ideas, great stories.
Published 1 month ago by Litzie
4.0 out of 5 stars Well worth the read
Good practical advice to use in the work place or indeed elsewhere. A book recommended by a work colleague! I was not disappointed.
Published 1 month ago by Mr Keith A Barlow
5.0 out of 5 stars it's brilliant, stupid!
If you live in a world where stats rule the roost like me, you've now been given a stat-busting weapon. Throw the story grenade in, make people care, sit back and smile.
Published 2 months ago by RV
4.0 out of 5 stars Walks the talk!
With well explained concepts and highly memorable examples the messages in this book ring true and stick. Read more
Published 3 months ago by James Sena
5.0 out of 5 stars So sticky I couldn't put it down!
Thought provoking stuff from chip and dan. Full of useful anecdotes to bring to life their message on how to make ideas stick
Published 6 months ago by S J McGinness
5.0 out of 5 stars Book Review on Made to Stick
We all have good ideas. Yet, most of our good ideas often amount to little or nothing simply because, even after sharing them, they are rarely, if ever, remembered. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Nate
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
This was an excellent read. Very well written and engaging with tons of insights on how to improve communication. Strongly recommended.
Published 6 months ago by Duncan Brodie
3.0 out of 5 stars Worth your time.
it is a while ago when I bought this item and have read it carefully.
Somehow I was expecting more.
Published 7 months ago by howHow
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