The Guardian: No amount of nagging will persuade a seal to balance a ball on its nose. This was an indisputable point made in an article I read some time ago about how techniques used by animal trainers could be applied in human relationships. Fascinating stuff.
In other words, working someone’s nerves for days on end isn’t going to persuade them to get the job done. But if they do somehow get it done, be sure to throw them a fish. Or something. It’s all about reward: less stick, more carrot. I get that. But the bit I can’t remember is how to get the seal to balance the ball on its nose in the first place. And now I can’t find the article, so I may never know.
The skills deployed by people in specialist fields are rich in untapped potential for use in domestic situations. The rhetorical devices practised by politicians are a case in point. Chris Mason.