Sticky Ideas

Was listening to an interview with Chip and Dan Heath about their book, Made to Stick. (Subtitle: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die)

They caught my attention when they started describing the “curse of knowledge.” Essentially (or what I got from the interview) was if you know too much about something it makes it hard to put yourself in the position of knowing little about something and trying to understand it.

They have a little demo where people are given a song to tap out and other people have to listen and figure out the song. They point out how hard is if you are just the listener and conversely how much information is usually in your head when you tap (the sounds of the song, the instruments, even a specific singer).

Looking at their site, they seem to be one of those business self-help cottage industries. (Actually one of them is a professor in the Business Department of Standford Grad school… this figures). Looking at their pictures they seem so young and assured to me.

I watch my ideas not stick to people all the time. I’m sort of to the point where I think it’s unhelpful when I barrage people with a bunch of ideas (barrage is how my brain often works…. but I feel okay about barraging on my blog… heh) so I try not to talk about them too much unless asked.

So it interests me…. knowing what helps ideas stick….

This book seems a bit reductive. But what isn’t these days?

They come up with six handy ways to make ideas stick.

I’ll write them here to help me think about them.

From the online excerpt:

Principle One: Simplicity
Principle Two: Unexpectedness
Principle Three: Concreteness
Principle Four:Credibility
Principle Five:Emotions
Principle Six: Stories

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