Understanding and influencing behavioural change

I read an insightful and practical article today that discussed the influences of behaviour and how you can affect change. The idea is that behaviour is caused or influced by something preceding it (the antecendent) and this results in a consequence. There are two models that together, help designers to understand how people make decisions and how they can influence this. I thought it would be worth pulling out the key points for future use.

The Theory of Planned Behaviour suggests there are three things we need to know in order to predict behaviour;

1) Attitude – is the person in favour of doing it

2) Subjective norm – how much social pressure does the person feel to do it

3) Perceived behavioural control – how in control of the action the person feels

The Stages of Change Model then shows how people move through a behavioural change. People can enter, exit or repeat the process so it’s important to understand where they fit:

  • Pre-contemplation
  • Contemplation
  • Preparation or determination
  • Action
  • Maintenance
  • Termination (100% self efficacy)
  • Relapse (cycle back to an earlier stage).

This seems like a practical and powerful method of understanding how to affect behavioural change.

The full article is on Johnny Holland Magazine.


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