Our opinion on Influence and Manipulation of R.Cialdini

“Influence and Manipulation” is what we call in English “a self-help book”. These books are intended to help everyone to take his life in his hands. Based on the work of recognized researchers, human behavior is scrutinized by the author, Robert Cialdini, to help us regain control over our lives. A researcher in social psychology, Robert Cialdini works at the University of Arizona. He studied for three years all the methods and strategies used by certain professionals (car salesmen, direct sellers, charities) to bend our will.

Robert Cialdini highlights mechanical behavior that exist in the animal kingdom and in the human kingdom. Starting from the example of turkeys which adopt predetermined behaviors according to the situations in which they find themselves, the researcher demonstrates that these predetermined behaviors are also registered in us. For example, he demonstrates what drives customers in a jewelry store to spend a fortune on Indian jewelry, assuming that what is rare and expensive. A simple stimulus triggers an automatic reaction, as in turkeys whether or not they take care of their young depending on the quality of the cry they give.

Manipulation

This supports the work of Ellen Langer, a researcher in social psychology, who demonstrated thatproviding a reason makes it easier to get what you want. Some people have managed to decipher our automatic behaviors and use it to manipulate us as they please. These principles are articulated according to certain poles. What is most surprising is the reciprocity of give and take. For example, a university professor had an experiment where he sent Christmas cards to complete strangers. He received in return a myriad of cards. An automatic response according to the principle that implies that we must strive to return the benefits received by others. Receiving creates debt. Then there is the phenomenon of commitment and consistency. As soon as we engage we want to adopt a consistent behavior. It stands for strength of character and intelligence, rationality, logic and honesty.

In Influence and Manipulation, we are invited to identify and recognize the mechanisms and techniques that are used to manipulate us. It goes further, because thanks to this book we understand a little better our way of reasoning and we can face the difficulties of modern life.


Scroll to Top