Tag Archives: Bias

A Revealing Behind-the-Scenes Look at Product Attractiveness

In a quest to discover what contributes to product attractiveness, I uncovered the power of belonging vs. standing out. What I discovered was that more affluent people like to buy products that help them stand out in a crowd. By contrast, the working class tends to prefer mass-produced products that are associated with an in-crowd they aspire to be like.

How Your Confirmation Bias Is Stifling Your Business Success

A confirmation bias is the tendency to search for, interpret, favor, and recall information in a way that conforms to one's preexisting beliefs or hypotheses while giving disproportionately less consideration to alternative possibilities. A confirmation bias is a type of cognitive bias and a systematic error of inductive reasoning. People display this bias when they gather or remember information selectively, [...]

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What To Do When You Exceed Your Estimate

We prioritize tasks based on our return on investment (ROI). If we undertake a task that we think should take one day to complete and we find ourselves still working on it two days later, it is time to reevaluate our efforts. For the most part, human beings are all poor estimators. Remember the last time you said it would [...]

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What To Do When You Exceed Your Estimate

We prioritize tasks based on our return on investment (ROI). If we undertake a task that we think should take one day to complete and we find ourselves still working on it two days later, it is time to reevaluate our efforts. For the most part, human beings are all poor estimators. Remember the last time you said it would [...]

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The Endowment Effect

In the book “Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces that Shape our Decisions”, Dan Ariely talks about a cognitive bias known as the Endowment Effect. Simply stated, the endowment effect is the fact the people in general place a higher value on the things they have over identical things they do not have. Dan used the example of Duke University's Blue Devils [...]

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The “Recency Bias”

For our Everest expedition, the previous few years had offered a better than average weather pattern during the month of May, which is when most expeditions plan to reach the summit. The guides became complacent and assumed that May of 1996 would hold the same good weather pattern. They should have made their decisions based on overall weather probability. A more [...]

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The “Overconfidence Bias”

The guides of the Everest expeditions often boasted that they could guide anyone with average fitness to the top of Mt. Everest. They were so confident that they ignored the 2:00 return to base rule and paid the ultimate price. In a poll taken of teen drivers, 93% indicated that they were better than average drivers. Statistically, only 50% [...]

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The “Sunk Cost Bias”

Members of the ill-fated Everest expedition invested upwards of $65k each. They spent weeks hiking to reach the final base camp before their ultimate eighteen-hour push to the summit. There is an unwritten rule that if you have not made the summit by two o'clock in the afternoon of the final push, you [...]

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