Matt Wallaert is a behavioral psychologist and entrepreneur focused on building products and programs that create behavior change to help people lead better, happier lives. His talk at Venturef0rth in Philadelphia started on the topic of JDM (judgement decision making). His examples explore unconscious reasoning for making certain decisions. What should I wear today? Should I take a taxi or Uber? Should I go to the gym?
He illustrates the dynamic relationship between inhibiting and promoting pressures. For example, people LOVE M&M’s – promoting pressures, such as caloric intake and the deliciousness of the chocolate encourage people to eat the candy. Conversely, inhibiting pressures, such as cost and availability keep people from eating M&M’s all of the time.
If asked, “How would you encourage someone to do more of something?” Generally, most people will brainstorm and create suggestions of how to add more promoting pressures. The law of diminishing margin of returns makes it difficult (and more costly) to put these promoting pressures into effect.
“Making the incrementally better tasting M&M cost a lot more money than just making them more available.”
Matt reminds us that when asking how to get “more X” – don’t forget about the inhibiting pressures. “And in reality, where most start ups end up being disruptive is in the inhibiting space.”