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Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions (Book Review of the Week-ish)

After suffering a tragic injury as a young man, Dan Ariely wanted to know what sorts of treatment hurt less. Was it better – as the adage says – to rip the band-aid off all at once? Or was it better to slowly peel the bandages off? Questions such as these led Ariely to the field of behavioral economics, where he continued to ask questions about why people sometimes pay too high a price when logic would dictate otherwise. He outlines what he’s learned in his terrific book, “Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions”.

Ariely examines the relationships between relative prices and purchase decisions, procrastination and decision making, the costs of social norms vs. economic transactions, and what causes people to cheat. Smart, well-written, often funny and occasionally poignant, Ariely brings both a scientist’s detachment and a moralist’s passion to these and other issues. Business managers and marketers will gain tremendous insights for setting prices designed to sell, and everyone will learn more about who we are and why we do what we do. I highly recommend picking up a copy.

Whether you set prices – or simply want to avoid paying a price too high – “Predictably Irrational” is worth every penny. Grab a copy today.

Tim Peter is the founder and president of Tim Peter & Associates. You can learn more about our company's strategy and digital marketing consulting services here or about Tim here.

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