"A person becomes more likeable when they are clumsy or make mistakes."
Is spilling coffee on yourself ever beneficial? What about stubbing your toe? Falling down in public? According to social psychology, clumsy mistakes like these can give individuals an advantage more often than you might think.
What Is The Pratfall Effect?
The Pratfall Effect states that people who are considered highly competent are found to be more likeable when they perform an everyday blunder than those who don’t. The effect was first studied by social psychologist Elliot Aronson in 1966. Aronson speculated that people considered “superior” by others could become more attractive upon committing a small pratfall.
Because these superior people were viewed by others as “superhuman,” a small mistake would allow others to better humanize them, and thus, like them more.
We can observe the truth of the Pratfall Effect with the famous film actress Jennifer Lawrence. Widely touted for her talent and beauty, she is also known for her gaffes, such as falling down at red carpet events and speaking brashly in interviews. Yet Lawrence is commonly considered a “down-to-earth” celebrity and regularly celebrated for her likeability.