The Power Of Habit

The Tom Sullivan show on Fox Business introduced me to Charles Duhigg. Promoting new book The Power Of Habit, his interview was a good one.

He kicked off with this attention-grabber:

45% of daily behaviours are not decisions, but habits

That’s our brain trying to make things easier for us. You can see the theme develop here… what makes buyers’ minds relax, compute less? Why, the habit of re-ordering from us, of course!

Well, you can begin to work it out further. There are, apparently, three parts to ‘habit’;

the cue – routine – the reward

We focus on the middle bit. The actual habitual tick itself. Yet the other two are as important.

Then a fascinating chat occurred around shopping habits. Some parent in America seems to have complained when he saw coupons for baby gear being offered his daughter. Yet it turned out the store had spotted her patterns of buying the things only those pregnant buy (unscented lotions and extra cottonballs) and yes, she was indeed expecting.

Such predictive analytics have been the mainstay of supermarket loyalty programs for years.

Then the wonderful example of one-time Alcoa boss, Paul O’Neal. He identified an issue in health and safety across the company. By altering habits around this, so that it became second nature to think this way rather than other ways, he not only improved on injury reduction, but the overall company performance as well.

This seems all done to be able to change a “keystone habit”.

Where is such for your sales process? What can be amended from which all other things flow?

And not just for you and your sales team, but your buyers too? Or your main contact at your largest account?

It could even be a communication habit (how often you get in touch, or respond). Whichever it is, as Mr Duhigg summarised, you achieve greatness when;

you shape the right habit, you shape the right culture

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