People have a natural tendency to do what everybody else is doing, even if negative.
California study of energy use put cards on people’s doors showing them how they rate vs their neighbors on energy consumption. Over the next several weeks, the ones that showed “they used more than average” reduced consumption by 5.7%. Ones that were below average, increased by 8.6%.
People will deviate from their actions to meet what others are doing.
How do you keep the people doing well from wandering toward the middle? It’s often good to give a symbol of positive reinforcement.
In the energy study, they used a frowny face and a smiley face. No impact on the people with the frowny face. But, on the people using less energy – adding the smiley face helped. Ones w/ smiley vs no face, had no change in energy consumption. This is versus the 8.6% increase previously seen.
Studies showing that businesses who pointed out that people were late 5.3% of the time had people who were late less than that, show up late more often. Research shows that those who show up on time, should be praised.