Steve J. Martin on The Small Big | Tantorious

Tantorious is a monthly podcast series featuring interviews with well-known authors, hosted by Allan Hoving and presented by Tantor Audio.

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Steve J. Martin is the director of Influence at Work in the United Kingdom; his work has been featured in the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and Wired. He is the coauthor, with Robert B. Cialdini and Noah J. Goldstein, of THE SMALL BIG: Small Changes that Spark Big Influence.

 

Excerpts from the audio interview:

Q: What does your latest research in persuasion science show?

A: Every one of us would like to be a little more persuasive, both at work and at home. And it turns out that we can, but not in the ways that we normally think. … The research shows that small changes that link to deeply seated motivations can have a huge impact.

Q: Can you give a concrete example?

A: In the U.K., we were asked to suggest small changes to a standard letter asking people to submit their tax returns on time. We added a sentence across the top pointing out – truthfully – that most people pay their taxes on time. It had a huge impact, collecting hundreds of millions of additional dollars.

Listen to a sample of the Tantor audiobook edition of The Small Big, narrated by Mike Chamberlain.

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