Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Frequently used shortcuts in judging others:

Frequently used shortcuts in judging others:

Selective perception:

  • Any characteristics that make a person, object, or event stand out will increase the probability that it will be perceived.
  • It is impossible for us to assimilate (integrate, adjust, absorb) everything we see: only certain stimuli can be taken in, their interest, background, experience.
  • E.g. car like your own car
  • Selective perception allows to “speed-read” others, but not without the risk of drawing an inaccurate picture.
  • Because we see what we want to see, we can draw unwarranted conclusions from an ambiguous situation.

Halo effect: 

  • drawing a general impression about an individual on the basis of a single characteristic.
  • Single trait to influence overall impression
  • Class instructor:
  • Enthusiasm: rated high
  • Knowledge, quiet, qualified: rated low

Contrast effect:

  • evaluation of a person’s characteristics that are affected by comparison with other people recently encountered who rank higher or lower on the same characteristics.
  • We don’t evaluate a person in isolation, our reaction to one person is influenced by other person we have recently encountered.
  • Interview: a candidate is likely to receive a more favorable evaluation if preceded by mediocre applicants and a less favorable evaluation if preceded by a strong applicant.
  • Never perform (entertainers) after a kids or animal.


  • Judge others if we assume that they are similar to us.
  • Attributing one’s own characteristics to other people
  • You like challenges and responsibilities in your job: you assume that others want the same


  • Judging someone on the basis of one’s perception of the group to which that person belongs
  • All Muslims are not terrorist
  • Stereotypes based on gender , age, race, ethnicity and weight
  • Women  won’t relocate for promotion
  • Men are not interested in child care
  • Older workers can’t learn new skills
  • Asians immigrants are hardworking
  • Overweight people lack discipline.

 (Ref: Organization Behavior, S.P.Robbins) 

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