♦️People like us do things like this

Annie Duke teaches poker. Most of her work focuses on decision making.

When she started, Duke said the biggest challenge was getting people to buy into her system. Rather than tell people what to do, Duke said she had to convince people to choose what to do.

Relatedly, Duke was asked how she might communicate with clients during the coronavirus pandemic. She gave three steps for communicating better.

  1. Create a tribe. We are the kind of people who make good choices, who have strong opinions, loosely held. We are people focused on the long-term and who can weather this storm.

  2. Predict the future. Your friends will talk about the financial impact of this pandemic. The news will too. Your rarely-seen-neighbors may even bring it up. Talking is fine, but they may not be in our tribe.

  3. Frame it. During the 2008 crisis it felt like this too and we came through it, and right now, there are people spending all day working on this stuff, modeling the outcomes, talking to their peers. That’s our competition.

What’s so helpful about Duke’s explanations is that they create an identity, we are the kind of people who do this, rather than an explanation. It’s one thing to talk about base rates and another thing to identify as a person who uses them.