Chika Laju-okorodudu Written by Chika Laju-okorodudu · 2 min read >

Sequel to my last write up, these are the continuation of hidden traps. These continuation of hidden traps are some of the biases that managers should avid in making decisions. This is because it might alter the credibility of that decision. Some of them are:

The confirming evidence trap

i learnt that this bias leads us to seek out information. This information that supports our existing instinct or point of view while avoiding information that contradicts it.

The confirming evidence bias not only affects where we go to collect evidence. It also how we interpret the evidence we receive. This leads us to give too much weight to supporting the information.

There are two fundamental psychological forces at work here. The first is our tendency to subconsciously decide what we want to do before we figure out why.

The second is our inclination to be more engaged by things we like than things we dislike.

Some techniques to avoid falling under this trap:

  1. Always check to see whether you are examining all the evidence with equal rigor. Avoid the tendency to accept confirming evidence without questions.
  2. Get someone you respect to play devils advocate. To argue against the decision you are contemplating.
  3. Be honest with yourself about your motives
  4. In seeking advice from others, do not ask leading questions that invite confirming evidence.

The framing trap

I learnt that the way a problem is framed can influence the choices you make. The first step in making a decision is to frame the question.

A poorly framed problem can undermine even the best-considered decision.

The framing trap can take many forms, and it is often closely related to other psychological traps.

Some techniques to avoid falling under this trap:

  1. One should not automatically accept the initial frame, whether it was formulated by you or by someone else. Always try to reframe the problem in various ways.
  2. Try posing problems in a neutral, redundant way that combines gains and loses or embraces different reference points.
  3. Think hard throughout your decision-making process about the framing of the problem.
  4. When others recommend decisions, examine the way they framed the problem. Challenge them with different frames.

Estimating and forecasting traps

Estimating and forecasting traps involves how Most time we make estimates about a lot of variables that lead to decision-making. That is because we are constantly making judgements about these variables. We also get quick feedbacks about how accurate the judgements are.

However, making estimates and forecasts about uncertain events is a different ball game. Managers continually make such estimates and forecasts, they rarely get clear feedback about their accuracy.

The danger of relying on this trap is our minds never becomes calibrated for estimates in the face of uncertainty.

The overconfidence traps

We tend to be overconfident in the accuracy of our estimates. This can lead to errors in judgement and, in turn, bad decisions.

The bad implication of relying on this trap is that it can make you underestimate. The high end or overestimate the low end of a crucial variable. One can miss attractive opportunities or expose themselves to a greater risk than anticipated.

The prudence trap

This is a form of bias that emanates from overcautiousness.  Taking precautions is good but when it is extreme, it could pose a risk.

The recallability trap.

This recallability trap is basing our predictions about future events based on our memory of past events. We can be overly influenced by dramatic events- those that leave a strong impression on our memory.

For example. You can assign a high possibility of meeting traffic on a particular road, if you met traffic the last two times you passed it consecutively.

Lawyers always get caught in this trap when defending liability suits. Their decisions about whether to settle a claim. And take it to court usually hinge on their assessments of the possible outcomes of a trial.

The best way to avoid this trap is by reducing the effects of overconfidence in making estimates.

In conclusion, from this precept on the continuation of hidden traps. We can deduce that the best protection against all psychological traps, in isolation or in combination is awareness. This will also guide as a check if one is tempted to derail and fall for any of these traps.

Written by Chika Laju-okorodudu
I am a Lawyer with a working experience in Human Resource Management. I love to explore and try new things... Profile

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