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59 Seconds

Think a Little, Change a Lot

By Richard Wiseman
  • Read in 15 minutes
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  • Contains 9 key ideas
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59 Seconds: Think a Little, Change a Lot by Richard Wiseman

59 seconds (2010) lays out some handy tips and insights backed by scientific research. Apply them today, and experience the change you want in your life.

This is a Blinkist staff pick

“I love these blinks because of their surprising, and surprisingly easy to use, tips. The email technique to catch liars is one of my favorite little hacks ever.”

– Ben S, Audio Lead at Blinkist

Key idea 1 of 9

Nail that interview by being more likable.

Interviewers select job candidates based on the right qualifications and work experience, right? Well, not exactly. Studies have shown there is one factor that trumps all others when it comes to landing a job: Likability. Below are some simple tricks to make people like you.

After following over one hundred former students hunting for their first jobs, researchers from the University of Washington and University of Florida found that those who secured the interviewer’s favor were the most likely to be hired.

There were a few things that made them likeable: some spoke about interesting topics that were unrelated to the job, others maintained a genuine smile and some spoke highly of the organization they were applying to. This is good news, since these things are easy to do and make a huge difference.

Another way to gain someone’s favor in an interview is to reveal your weaknesses right off the bat.

In the 1970’s, Duke University psychologists conducted research where participants were presented with a recording of a man talking about his life. In one tape, the man confessed early on to getting caught cheating in school; in another tape, he left his confession until the end.

The man was rated far more likable by those who’d listened to the tape in which he made an early confession.

It’s therefore advantageous to save your positive aspects until the end of the interview. By doing so, it appears that you prefer letting your strong points come up naturally in conversation, which makes you more likable.

Here’s one last interview tip: don’t freak out if you make a mistake.

Chances are that a mistake is far more apparent to you than to others, and an overwrought reaction or apology will only highlight something that might otherwise have gone unnoticed.

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