Why businesses don’t experiment

Brand Camp cartoon: "Making the Leap"

I found Dan Ariely’s perspective on experiments very insightful.  Please note particularly:

“I think this irrational behavior stems from two sources. One is the nature of experiments themselves. As the people at the consumer goods firm pointed out, experiments require short-term losses for long-term gains. Companies (and people) are notoriously bad at making those trade-offs. Second, there’s the false sense of security that heeding experts provides. When we pay consultants, we get an answer from them and not a list of experiments to conduct. We tend to value answers over questions because answers allow us to take action, while questions mean that we need to keep thinking. Never mind that asking good questions and gathering evidence usually guides us to better answers.”

See also Tim Harford’s perspective: Why don’t we experiment?

About Arie Goldshlager

Customer Insight, Customer Strategy, and Innovation Consultant
This entry was posted in Experiments. Bookmark the permalink.

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