25: You're a Blueberry!

by Max Leibman


A colleague at work, standing behind you, says “Blueberry.” What do you do?

The answer to that odd question—and Max has a doozy of a story about one former co-worker’s response—depends on what you bring to the situation. Faced with ambiguous or uncertain circumstances, our expectations shape our experience of life and work.

Examples abound: a manager who expects a job candidate to flirt during the interview will elicit flirtatious behavior; expectations of children’s performance change how we treat them, in turn changing their performance. Caitie gives us a tour of the social science of expectations, anticipation, and the Stanford Marshmallow Experiment. Where does it lead—and how does the blueberry story end? Listen and find out. We promise that the answers will be . . . satisfying.

(What, you expected us to say, “unexpected?” That’s what we’re talking about!) 

Links: 

Nebraska Leadership Seminar, Inc. | NebraskaLeadership.org

"What is an Expectation Confirmation?" by Kendra Cherry | About Education

Confirmation Bias | Wikipedia

Street Harrassment | Wikipedia

Muppets Kermit Face Light Green T-Shirt | Stylin Online

Happiness Is a Serious Problem by Dennis Problem | Amazon

The Dennis Prager Show | Official Site

"Weird Slang for Gambling?" | The "Blog" of "Unnecessary" Quotation Marks

“The Office Flirt” by Susan Campbell | Psychology Today

“’I Think She’s Attracted to Me’: The Effect of Men’s Beliefs on Women’s Behavior in a Job Interview Scenario” by Robert D. Ridge and Jeffrey S. Reber | Basic and Applied Social Psychology

Law of Attraction (New Thought) | Wikipedia

Social Psychology (5th Edition) by Elliot Aronson, Timothy D. Wilson, and Robin M. Akert | Amazon

Invisibilia for January 23, 2015: "How to Become Batman" | NPR Podcast Episode

Rats of NIMH | Wikipedia

Pygmalion Effect | Wikipedia

Effortless Success: How to Get What You Want & Have a Great Time Doing It! by Michael Neill | Amazon

"Leaping from Hope to Trust" by David Allen | Productive Living

"The Quotable Bill Gates" by Nancy Weil | ABC News

"2014 Tanner Lecture on Human Values - Walter Mischel - 04/09/14" | YouTube

"The Struggles of a Psychologist Studying Self-Control" by Maria Konnikova | The New Yorker

Stanford Prison Experiment | Wikipedia

Walter Mischel | The Colbert Report

Willpower: Rediscovering the Greatest Human Strength by Roy F. Baumeister and John Tierney | Amazon

The Marshmallow Test: Mastering Self-Control by Walter Mischel | Amazon

Milgram Experiment | Wikipedia

Ghostbusters Opening Scene | YouTube

Real Life (Jump to "Related Terminology") | Wikipedia

Priority Episode No. 1: "A Montage of Montages" | Podcast Episode

Priority Episode No. 14: "But Females Are Strong as Hell" | Podcast Episode

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee | Wikipedia / Amazon