“Drive” — 10 Things I learned from Daniel Pink

A few jobs ago in a different company, I split my time between IT Support and IT Sales. It was my first job in IT. I felt lucky to be there.

Drive by Daniel Pink
Drive by Daniel Pink

In the Sales role, my sales manager was constantly looking over my shoulder.

I would compose an email to a client and he would revise it.

I would write up a specific piece of hardware and he would suggest something different.

Continue reading ““Drive” — 10 Things I learned from Daniel Pink”

I Smell a Rat! The Prisoner’s Dilemma

Did you know the original Universities were designed as Prisons to keep unruly young men caged up while their hormones drove risky behavior that threatened the local social harmony?

Rather than allow young people to take risks that help them to grow and experience life, we continue to indoctrinate them with social rules to help keep the order.

The risks available to busy students are far less violent than what may be the alternatives.

I don’t remember everything from University. There certainly weren’t a lot of dangerous risks in the small town where I studied.

Dorm life was a party — and we could smoke indoors! A “career” after graduation seemed a lifetime away. Econ 101 taught me the benefits of Free Trade.

I hated this class! Photo "Amherst63-012" by NealeA, Flickr, CC-By-2.0
I loved this class! Photo “Amherst63-012” by NealeA, Flickr, CC-By-2.0

And while I learned a lot I’m sure, there is plenty that I didn’t learn.

Maybe you, too?

•We didn’t learn how to start a business in university — the mindset of an entrepreneur.

•We didn’t learn how to create and maintain a budget — the mindset of habit.

•We didn’t learn to negotiate — the mindset of persuasion.

This is the reason I’ve started PersuasionReadingList.com — to learn what I should know to understand what moves the human mind, and to share these concepts of influence with you. Continue reading “I Smell a Rat! The Prisoner’s Dilemma”

Lies and the Limbic Brain

Think about a time when you pretended to continue an uncomfortable conversation as you moved into another room. Sure, you could still talk back and forth, but it was more difficult. Another item soon occupied your focus, which ended the exchange.

Discomfort rules your limbic brain. That limbic lizard brain inside is what moves your body to a safer room when you’re uncomfortable.

I found myself doing exactly this earlier last week. Fleeing the scene of an accidental argument. Continue reading “Lies and the Limbic Brain”

Keep ’em at Arm’s Length

Imagine the last argument you had. You were convinced of your position. There’s no way the other person was right.

They thought the same about your argument, of course.

I’d be willing to bet at least one of you crossed your arms in front of yourself to block the very ideas being spoken.

Arms are one of our most expressive forms of communication. They’re used to build trust and rapport, as we’ll see. They’re used for defense. They’re used to communicate effectively at work.

Imagine the college professor, using her arms to focus our attention to different parts of her presentation. Lawyers use their arms to emphasize their points. Traffic cops use their arms to direct the flow around them.

We are naturally inclined to watch people’s arms — so much that illusionists and pickpockets take advantage of this to misdirect our attention.

In addition to emphasizing our speech, sudden changes in our arms also communicate our limbic reactions to our surroundings.

Image "Put your hands up in the air" by Thomas Leuthard, Flickr, CC-By-2.0
Image “Put your hands up in the air” by Thomas Leuthard, Flickr, CC-By-2.0

Continue reading “Keep ’em at Arm’s Length”

How Your Lizard Brain Gives Away Your Secrets

Your head contains three brains. They’re all tasked with their own jobs to keep you alive. These brains have evolved over millions of years along with humanity.

"Brained" by Jose, Flickr, CC-By-2.0
“Brained” by Jose, Flickr, CC-By-2.0

The oldest of the three brains is the reptilian stem. It controls our primitive drives for survival, like our desire for food and sex.

To witness the reptilian drive to stay alive, check out this exciting video from the BBC: Continue reading “How Your Lizard Brain Gives Away Your Secrets”