Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Creating new social norms on a Victoria train

4th December 2012, 9:15am in a train from Bromley South to Victoria.
I am entering a packed train with no seats free except in the first class. People are squeezing. The 1st class section with 12 seats has only one person sitting. Looks like no passengers has a first class ticket.

The only person sitting in the first class section is a woman age 35. I decide to sit next to her. She says:
- I have no 1st class ticket but I sat here anyway.
- Me neither but I have never seen anyone checking tickets on this route – I say.

We joke a bit in a relaxed way and loud enough for everyone else to hear. So she is a leader of the new social movement and I am her first follower and we are having a good time.

After about 10 seconds the first wave of followers starts entering the 1st class carriage and in 20 seconds the carriage looks like this:

So now we have 12 people committing the same “crime” and there is no way the ticker inspector can fine us all even if they did come around.

The components of success:
- objective need
- leader +  follower bonding playfully
- expressed doubt in negative consequences

No comments:

Post a Comment