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Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die is a book by brothers Chip and Dan Heath published by Random House on January 2, 2007.[1] The book continues the idea of "stickiness" popularized by Malcolm Gladwell in The Tipping Point, seeking to explain what makes an idea or concept memorable or interesting. A similar style to Gladwell's is used, with a number of stories and case studies followed by principles. The stories range from urban legends, such as the "Kidney Heist" in the introduction; to business stories, as with the story of Southwest Airlines, "the low price airline"; to inspirational, personal stories such as that of Floyd Lee, a passionate mess hall manager. Each chapter includes a section entitled "Clinic", in which the principles of the chapter are applied to a specific case study or idea to demonstrate the principle's application.

Made to Stick
Hardcover edition
Author Chip Heath & Dan Heath
Country United States
Language English
Subject Psychology
Publisher Random House
Publication date
January 2, 2007
Media type Print, e-book
Pages 304 pp.
ISBN 1-4000-6428-7
OCLC 68786839
302/.13 22
LC Class HM1033 .H43 2007
Followed by Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard



The book's outline follows the acronym "SUCCES" (with the last s omitted). Each letter refers to a characteristic that can help make an idea "sticky":

  • Simple – find the core of any idea
  • Unexpected – grab people's attention by surprising them
  • Concrete – make sure an idea can be grasped and remembered later
  • Credible – give an idea believability
  • Emotional – help people see the importance of an idea
  • Stories – empower people to use an idea through narrative

The book then goes to mention examples like: Simple: Southwest Airlines, whose motto is "THE low fare airline".[2] If a steward proposed serving chicken salad in the Texas–Vegas route, thinking about that motto helps one decide that this is not a good idea. Other example: Proverbs, which encapsulate wisdom in short sentences. The book mentions many case studies of successful teachers and professionals around the world such as Diana Virgo of Loudoun Academy of Science as a mathematics teacher.


Chip Heath is a professor of organizational behavior at Graduate School of Business at Stanford University. Dan Heath, a former researcher at Harvard, is a consultant and developer of innovative textbooks. They also write a regular feature for Fast Company magazine.[3]

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