Friday, July 27, 2012

The (Honest) Truth About Dishonesty

Everyone lies, no matter who they are. Even you. Yes, you. Fans of Dan Ariely will love his latest book, The Honest Truth About Dishonesty: How We Lie to Everyone---Especially Ourselves. The book provides fascinating accounts of the various experiments which prove over and over again that people are willing to lie and cheat, and the factors that affect the lying and cheating.

Ariely talks about how the chances of getting caught can affect cheating, and how companies can allow and even encourage cheating by its employees. Did you know that if you wear a knockoff, such as a fake Gucci handbag, you are more likely to cheat? There is a whole chapter dedicated to golf. Chapters 7 and 8 are probably the most important, as they cover how we cheat and lie to ourselves.

An interesting concept that he writes about in detail is about how cheating is contagious and how collaboration can cause an increased amount of cheating. Fortunately, Ariely has come up with various ways to help reduce cheating in various settings.

If you liked Predictably Irrational (by the way, there is an updated and expanded edition of this book), you will like The Honest Truth About Dishonesty.

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