Best Nonfiction Book: Discover Your Inner Economist: Use Incentives to Fall in Love, Survive Your Next Meeting and Motivate Your Dentist by Tyler Cowen
Discover Your Inner Economist is one of those books that’s full of surprising psychological truths and unexpected research results. A good number of them are super practical, too. And, what’s even cooler than that: this book isn’t a copycat–it’s an original idea for a book, at least as far as I can tell.
Primarily, Discovering Your Inner Economist is about the role of money as a powerful behavioral incentive.
Key takeaways: Sometimes, incentivizing with money backfires. Cultural identification and pride in oneself is more important than money. So is enjoying life. When you try to monetize activities that speak to these values, you can muddy the waters. Example: household chores. Children are often more motivated to do their chores by a sense of family belonging, responsibility and maturity. Paying for chores often causes even more feet-dragging.