The Moment of Truth
Phil Barden


Extract from Decoded: The Science Behind Why We Buy

We have seen that there are two systems driving our decisions, the autopilot and the pilot.

But when we are standing in front of a shelf in a supermarket or comparing alternative service providers, how do we arrive at our decision? What determines whether we buy one brand or another? How do we choose between all the different options?

In this chapter we deep-dive into the crucial questions and unlock the underlying principles of purchase decisions.

“The informality of the Changing Behaviours: Hibiscus evening was great. The roundtable discussion with everyone sharing their knowledge and experiences was stimulating. I think we all learnt something on a personal or work level that we could take back and use within our varied roles and sectors.”

Chris Hayward,
EMEA Marketing Director,

Phil Barden and Changing Behaviours Dinner
With CI Group

Our first Changing Behaviours event took place in April 2015 at the Michelin starred Hibiscus restaurant in Mayfair. The spectacular food was matched by the incredible insights from our guest speaker Phil Barden – author of Decoded: The Science Behind Why We Buy.

Hibiscus began its life in the rural town of Ludlow, Shropshire before moving to London in 2007. In relocating, Chef Patron Claude Bosi’s idea was to continue and build on what he had started, having already achieved 2 Michelin stars, not to create a brand new restaurant. Hibiscus has been listed in The World’s 50 Best Restaurant list since 2010 and at present is ranked at #5.

After the relocation the restaurant continued to be recognised for Bosi’s passion for flavours, simplicity and elegance. He continues to use molecular gastronomy to create some items on the menu in an effort to enhance their flavours, such as freeze-drying cabbage to create a puree. The cabbage is freeze dried into a powder and then reconstituted. As a principle he prefers only to enhance the flavours of individual ingredients rather than changing those flavours by using unusual techniques.

When choosing a venue for our inaugural event in 2015, Hibiscus was the obvious choice to combine the culinary science of Claude Bosi, using different behaviours to enhance flavours, with the behavioural, decision science of Phil Barden, helping us understand why consumers act in the way they do.

What a night – understanding the science behind why we buy!

The scene was set - a Michelin starred London restaurant, an industry expert and the room filled with interested Corporate Innovations clients.

It was with anticipation we organised our first client event of 2015. How would the year pan out? What would the future hold? With this in mind we chose a hot topic where we looked into the future and how neuroscience is driving ‘decision science’, pushing forward the frontiers of understanding how the human brain makes decisions.

Phil Barden, the author of ‘Decoded: The Science Behind Why We Buy’ was our obvious choice to share his findings and real life examples of the extraordinary impact that decision science had on his marketing campaigns. Phil’s career had previously covered trying to influence consumer behaviour at Unilever, Diageo and T-Mobile before his research into a new mental model. He found this fascinating, profound and so inspiring that he switched careers and joined Decode, the consultancy responsible for the model that had so radically changed his way of thinking.

Hibiscus, with 2 Michelin Stars and 5 AA Rosettes, was the obvious choice to combine the culinary science of Chef Patron Claude Bosi, using different behaviours to enhance flavours, with the behavioural, decision science of Phil Barden helping us to understand why consumers act in the way they do.

And what a night it was! I think I can speak for everyone when I say what a relaxed and thought provoking evening we had. We all learnt something, on a personal or work level, that we can take back and make use of. The informality was wonderful with the evening ending in a roundtable discussion with everyone sharing their thoughts and ideas from their different market sectors.

So now we have all the theory, let’s put it into practice with our clients, and see if we can help shape their brands and drive revenue.

Trafalgar Square hosted 13,500 people who all thought they were going to part in a massive dance performance, but all sang Hey Jude instead.

After the success of the ‘Dance’ campaign, and with his newly found knowledge, he immediately put this way of thinking to the test arranging a welcome home to remember for arriving passengers at Heathrow’s Terminal 5

Corporate Innovations Round Table Agency Ellipsis

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