The Book: Click: The Magic of Instant Connections by Ori Brafman and Rom Brafman, Broadway Books, $23.00 Hardcover, 200 Pages, June 2010.
Ori and Rom Brafman are the authors of one of my favorite books, Sway, which discussed the psychological influences that affect decision-making. Their latest book, Click, looks at how we make "an immediate, deep, and meaningful connection with another person or with the world around us."
Click is a book that reveals just what brings people together. In a chapter about similarity, even a point of connection as random and unintentional as an identical name, shows that "similarity, no matter what form it takes, leads to greater likability. When we discover a shared similarity with someone we've just met—and…it doesn't matter in which areas the similarity occurs—we're more likely to perceive the person as part of what psychologists call an in-group." Proximity, vulnerability, and an adaptable personality all contribute to one's ability to click.
The Brafmans' findings are based on research scattered across psychology, sociology and neuroscience, but the data is presented via stories, not dry statistics. We meet a police hostage negotiator who uses many of the principles of clicking to connect with criminals. They show how Bill Clinton, during the run for his first term, used vulnerability during the Gennifer Flowers scandal to redeem himself. Plus, the authors show how the four stars of the University of Florida Gators national champion basketball team clicked early on in their college careers and were better as a group in college than they were after they split up and became pros.
The authors certainly believe that clicking is a magical thing, but their research unveils "click accelerators" that can help us take more control over forming quick set connections. This is just the kind of book that I like: serious research explained with interesting real life stories and presented in a short concise format. I think you'll click with it too.
Reviewer Jack Covert is the founder of 800-CEO-READ, a leading bookseller to corporations and large organizations, based in Milwaukee.