Switch: How to change things when change is hard Paperback – 3 Mar 2011
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"A fantastic book" (Wired)
"Witty and instructive" (Wall Street Journal)
"Switch is likely to prove invaluable to anyone wanting to make long-lasting change a reality" (BBC Focus)
"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 best-selling Made to Stick - survey efforts to shape human behaviour in search of what works. Even when change isn't easy, it's often worth making" (Time)
"A must-read" (Forbes)
Change doesn't need to be hard. Just Switch.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
There are hard and easy changes. They argue that successful changes share a common pattern. They require the leader of change to do 3 things at once.
Firstly to change someone's behaviour you've got to change that person's situation - their hearts and minds. Unfortunately their hearts and minds often disagree. Conventional wisdom identifies the emotional side of the brain and the rational part. The Heaths prefer to think of it as the Elephant (the emotion) and the Rider (the rational). Perched atop a six tonne elephant is a rider holding the reins. The rider's control is precarious because the Rider is so small compared to the elephant. The elephant has enormous strengths - love, compassion, loyalty and sympathy. And even more important the Elephant is the one that gets things done. If you want to change you have to appeal to both. The Rider provides the planning and direction and the elephant provides the energy.
The second surprise about change is that change is not hard because people are lazy or resistant. Change is hard because people wear themselves out. What looks like laziness is often exhaustion. Like the Power of Habit, Switch looks at self control and holds that it is an exhaustible resource. So make change easier. Focus on a small change. But make sure you reach the Elephant (the emotion) as well as the Rider.
The Rider provides direction. But the danger is analysis paralysis. What looks like resistance is often lack of clarity. The third key to change is clarity.Read more ›
The book was suggested by a colleague and I was interested enough to consider it. A really good example of explaining thoughts by the use of great case studies and a simple analogy for the concept.
The book describes how we can be in charge of our change to drive the things that we really need to happen. The use of willpower (the rider), emotion (the elephant) and our environment (the path) can combine together to achieve great things.
I loved the quote that some is not a number and soon is not a time.
So is this simple, or simplistic? Have they provided a structure for individual and corporate change that is easy to apply and powerful in it effects, with all unnecessary verbiage and overkill stripped away? Or is it a nice little story - borrowed from someone else - with a swamp of other, lesser stories engineered in to fill out some space?
This book made me think, which is always a plus. Switch's often repeated mantra that 'people problems are really situation problems' (3, 183) challenged my own view of the nature of change considerably. It also serves to explain the authors' suspicion of personality testing and analysis as a change mechanism (114 with note, 252, 258). Their main thesis seems to be that managing change is not a matter of reason or emotion but environment, not inner working (which are hard to influence) but the outer world (which is easier).
This environmental emphasis is further reinforced by their (research justified) assertions that 'willpower is not enough' (10) and 'knowledge is not enough' (30, 35, 109, 112, 175). In particular, the notion that increased information can easily lead to change gets a real kicking in Switch; knowledge without change is TBU - True But Useless (71). Rather, emotions are the key (105), or rather motivation as managed through tweaking your situation.Read more ›
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.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book is all about change. Now think of a human being as a rider on an elephant; the rider is our rational side; the elephant is our emotional side. Read morePublished 9 days ago by Nick Michelioudakis
A great book, excellent clear structure and memorable case studies and examples coupled with a really solid evidence base. Read morePublished 23 days ago by avidreader
this novel is by far the most practical one I have ever read! The book is insightful and the recommendations are so simple you can literally close the book and start applying it -... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
Ever wondered why things just didn't work out? This explains why change can be so hard to enact and how you can make a successful change occur.Published 4 months ago by Marvin Suggs
I read their other book Made to Stick, and found it inspiring. This is equally so, so if you're aware of the first one, you won't be disappointed. And if you're not, get both! Read morePublished 5 months ago by Noah's dad
The authors take the let's explain everything with little stories approach (which I think is great!). Read morePublished 6 months ago by Pablo L.
One of the best books on change management and thinking out of the box. I can't stop recommending this book to everyone. Just love it.Published 6 months ago by Tanushree