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Putting Choice Architecture to Work

Today we’re talking about putting Choice Architecture to work for you in your life and business.

I first learned about Choice Architecture when I read Richard Thaler’s book "Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness." Choice Architecture is the idea that how we design systems and environments can actually help people make better choices.

A great example is the way you present food in your refrigerator or pantry. If you keep healthy snacks ready to go, front and center, guess what? You increase the likelihood that you will make a better choice…that is choice architecture.

I have seen people implement Choice Architecture in many areas of their personal and business lives. Food is definitely a good one to try – especially at the office – never underestimate the productivity boost you can get from eating right. How can you improve your process or environment at work to support you in eating good food throughout the day?

Here’s another example, a company I know in Colorado wanted to make the move towards being a zero waste office. So they got rid of all of the garbage cans at every desk and in every office and conference room. Now, they have big recycling and compost bins in their kitchen, and one smaller bin labeled landfill. They created a new system and environment around waste disposal, and it has completely changed people’s behavior in the office. See where this is going?

So this week, I want you to think about one of your business or personal goals and see if there might be a way to use Choice Architecture to support you in reaching that goal. How can you change your system, process or environment to help you make better choices? I'd love to hear what you come up with, please leave a comment!

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