Archive | Decisions

How Risk Aversion is Killing Your Business & What to Do About It

In Risk Aversion, we explained how human biology works against us when facing tough decisions. We are hard-wired to eliminate uncertainty meaning that we tend avoid tough decisions or choose the traditional path because following this path feels safe. Taking even a small risk scares us. The consequences of succumbing to our biology are an […]

Two Steps to Better Design Decisions

While the human brain is our greatest design resource, it also erects barriers in the form of cognitive bias, or brain quirks. Sadly, such brain quirks are legion and include the optimism, overconfidence, availability, and confirmation biases. The confirmation bias presents an especially difficult challenge because it causes us to seek evidence that supports our […]

How to Establish a More Transparent Decision-Making Process

Decision Making: A Flawed Approach “Our say is so far removed from our do!” lamented an executive earlier this spring. In other words, executives were making decisions that violated the company’s values. Equally problematic was the decision-making process itself. In a culture where consensus supposedly reigned supreme, company leaders followed a nearly authoritarian decision-making model. […]

Intuitive Decision Process

In Intuitive Decision Making we referred to Gary Klein’s definition of intuition: “The way we translate our experience into action. Our experience lets us recognize what is going on (making judgments) and how to react (making decisions).” The next step is to think carefully about when intuitive decision making works well, and when it poses […]

Intuitive Decision Making

Gut check,” “I just knew…,” “A woman’s intuition,” It’s no accident that these expressions are part of the daily vernacular. In life and in business, many of us believe firmly in the power of our intuition. Myth? Fact? Somewhere in between? Can we rely on intuition when making important business decisions? One reason the answer […]

Why Biology and Decision Making Don’t Mix

On a cool January evening in Florida, NASA leaders held a teleconference to discuss a space shuttle launch scheduled for the next day. Engineer Roger Boisjoly argued that the low temperatures would likely erode the O-Rings, an essential part of the solid rocket boosters. If damaged, the O-Rings would fail, almost certainly leading to disaster. […]

Decision Drivers: What Really Influences Your Decisions And Why You Should Care

Decision Drivers We are often unaware of significant and unconscious decision drivers. The five posts summarized below offer insight into the mysterious workings of the human brain and what truly drives our decisions. Are Human Decisions Eminently Rational, Hopelessly Irrational, or Neither? In this intriguing post, influence guru Robert Cialdini outlines the traditional poles in […]

Cognitive Biases—The Confirmation Bias

The confirmation bias refers to the tendency to favor information that reinforces our existing beliefs. As Andrew McVagh cleverly puts it in his post about the confirmation bias, “Did you know your brain is a yes-man, telling you only what you want to hear? He’s right, and we witness this bias in the current, highly […]

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