Mention your pet frog

I am huge believer that little details can make bid differences and I’m enjoying Richard Wiseman’s little book, 59 Seconds for its curation of some. Here’s one good one: In an experiment on negotiation, researchers compared the effectiveness of two versions of a final offer on a piece of art.

In one version, the seller offers to accept $6000. In the other, he makes the same financial offer but with added humour – “my final offer is $6000 and I’ll throw in my pet frog”. Apparently,

Those few moments of attempted humour had a big effect, with particpants making a much greater compromise in their purchase price whenever they heard about the frog.

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