The Ben Franklin Effect




Long time back one of my friends at TCS shared a story of an Indian entrepreneur (I totally forgot his name, though) who shared in an interview, that how he managed to pass through the customs while coming to India when he had a couple of laptops in his bags which if checked would have been seized. He related the incident and said that he used the “Ben Franklin Effect”. When my friend shared this story I was in awe and we thought of it as some magic.

In the book “59 Seconds: Think a Little, Change a Lot” the author Richard Wiseman shared the story behind this phenomenon and the reason why is it called the Ben Franklin Effect. You can read more about it from the wiki link by clicking here.

To summarize, Franklin Effect is basically asking for a favor and specifically a small one. And it turns out that the person giving you the favor will like you and will do another one if needed.

Very beautiful and elegant hack of life.

This 200 years old concept still holds true, and it was the reason why the Customs guy did not check the entrepreneur bag as he asked for a bottle of water while he was there waiting in line to be checked. Obviously, there is no way we can prove his case if it was because of the Franklin Effect or not as shared by the entrepreneur but there have been countless experiments which show that this works.


Published by Faisal

I am Faisal , a software developer @ Oracle, Hyderabad. Trying again my hands on blogging after several failures. Apart from blogging, I like cycling, running, and clicking pictures(who doesn't), I like to be productive in general.

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