Blink - Book Review

1614 Words7 Pages
Xavier Labour Relations Institute

Managing Human Behaviour Assignment

Blink by Malcolm Gladwell
A book review by Narendran Santhanam (G10031)

Contents Introduction 3 A brief summary 3 Evaluation 5 Conclusion 5

Introduction “Blink” by Malcolm Gladwell is a book about how we think without thinking, about choices that seem to be made in an instant – in the blink of an eye – that actually aren’t as simple as they seem. The book deals with the smallest components of our everyday lives—the content and origin of those instantaneous impressions and conclusions that spontaneously arise whenever we meet a new person or confront a complex situation or have to make a decision under conditions of stress.
A brief summary
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Perhaps one of the most important points made by Gladwell in this book is that neither analytical nor intuitive thinking is good or bad. But under chaotic conditions, the lesser the information available, the better because information overload can delay decisions, and under pressure, delayed decisions are worse than bad decisions. Gladwell illustrates this with an astonishing example of an experiment where sales of a jam shop were as high as thirty percent more when they had only six types of jam than when they had twenty four.
What Gladwell calls “thin-slicing” or rapid cognition, should be done in context. Examples of the market researches on taste-test of Coke and Pepsi samples, survey of people’s acceptance of Michael Kenna’s music and two radically new TV shows on CBS have been quoted to emphasize the importance of context in thin-slicing. Numerous instances of products that received higher acceptance among the public only because they were packaged differently make it clear to us that thin-slicing is useful only when done the right way. When a product is new and different, it is vulnerable to market research, which in most cases is not done in the right context, thus leading to the product being shelved.
Having established the fact that rapid cognition is not always as accurate as one would want it to be, Gladwell now goes on to the topic of reading the minds of others just by looking
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