Cognitive Thinking and Biases:

Bias in the Selected Statement

1). “That’s the way we’ve always done it.”

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Confirmation bias focuses on favoring information that confirms the preexisting belief or preconception. As a result, the team will seek creative solutions that confirm the team’s beliefs rather than challenge them or seek new possibilities (Pinder, 2019). Furthermore, an employee or individual who enjoys addressing problems in a particular way will always choose the alternative that keeps things as they are. As a result, it is possible to miss out on potential benefits that may be realized after changes in organizational choices are implemented. If teams must rely on traditional decision-making methods, the process of gathering, interpreting, and evaluating information will be hampered (Keil et al., 2007). This means that the team will not employ alternate data gathering methods so long as they do not align with preexisting beliefs; rather, they will evaluate and interpret tools using known tools that will keep things the way it is.

2). “The CEO needs to validate it first.”

This is an example of authority bias, in which the CEO’s viewpoint notion is preferred over other team ways. This suggests that senior team members’ opinions are superior to those sought from team members, even when alternative concepts, ideas, and contributions are more innovative and pertinent to problem solutions (Pinder, 2019). Authoritarian bias limits an individual’s ability to think divergently and generate fresh ideas at the subconscious level. As a result, as long as the authority’s perspective is opposite to the majority, fresh and original ideas will be excluded from decision-making. Authority bias affects information gathering, interpretation, and evaluation since there is less brainstorming when a leader’s judgment is definitive before a choice is approved (DeAcedo Lizárraga, 2007). Despite the team’s brainstorming on a problem, the final decision will be left to the CEO; hence, the team will be discouraged from gathering data, interpreting, and evaluating the information as long as the CEO’s perspective is superior.

3). “Trust me, I know this won’t work.”

This is a case of overconfidence bias in action. This is because such statements are frequently made by people who have previously failed and are unwilling to take a chance (How to Reduce Bias In Decision-Making, n.d.). As a result, people tend to play it cautiously in order to prevent repeating their earlier failures. Because the team will make decisions without following a defined decision-making process, the team’s decision-making will be impacted. Prior experience with the issues instills dread in the team, preventing them from collecting, interpreting, and evaluating data gathered during the structural decision-making process.

4). “If it’s not broken, why fix it?”

This is an example of status quo bias where the current situation is favored and maintained due to the loss of version and does nothing as a result (Pinder, 2019). If that is fine the way they are, then there is no need to change anything. The status quo indicates that people feel that perpetuating the present state of a thing is more preferable over any change. The bias will affect the decision-making because the team will not implement new ideas so long the existing ideas are still working, and no problem is being faced (Keil et al., 2007). The gathering, interpreting, and evaluating of data will not occur since members will hope to stick to the existing state of things rather than changing anything.

5). “There is no budget for this risky stuff.”

Anchoring bias is exemplified here. Individuals with cognitive biases are more likely to depend on the initial bits of information they are provided on a topic (Pinder, 2019). An individual manipulates the minds of team members by preloading them with information that they already know. This bias has a tremendous impact on creative thought, as well as the final judgment. Data gathering, interpretation, and evaluation are harmed because the team will rely on the first information provided by one team member, which indicates that the project is risky, thus influencing the data gathering process. The members may refuse to participate in data collection and evaluation due to the assumption that the project is risky.

6). “Let me check with the team and see what they think.”

This is referred to as confirmation bias. The team prefers information that confirms preexisting beliefs or preconceptions in order to believe what they want to think. As a result, the team will seek out new solutions that correspond to them rather than challenging beliefs. In this instance, it is difficult to make a judgment without first seeking input from the team so that whenever a decision is reached, it confirms prior opinions (Pinder, 2019). The purpose of asking people what they think is to ensure that the innovative solution implemented would validate existing beliefs. This form of bias has a negative impact on decision-making because it prevents autonomous thinking and aligns decisions with what is best for the team. In this case, data analysis, interpretation, and evaluation would be useless because the final decision must be taken as a group rather than individually. As a result, the team may not follow a formal decision-making process and instead make decisions based on what they believe is right.

References

de Acedo Lizárraga, M. L. S., de Acedo Baquedano, M. T. S., & Cardelle-Elawar, M. (2007). Factors that affect decision-making: gender and age differences. International Journal of psychology and psychological therapy, 7(3), 381-391.

Keil, M., Depledge, G., & Rai, A. (2007). Escalation: The role of problem recognition and cognitive bias. Decision Sciences, 38(3), 391-421.

Pinder, M. (2019).16 cognitive biases that can kill your decision making. Board of Innovation.Retrieved from https://swodeam.com/docs/diagnosis/16-cognitive-biases-that-can-kill-your-decision-making-Board-of-Innovation.pdf

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