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Focus induced tunnel vision in managerial judgment and decision making: The peril and the antidote

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  • Posavac, Steven S.
  • Kardes, Frank R.
  • Josko Brakus, J.
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    Abstract

    Managers often must assess singular strategic options. Four studies of such assessments demonstrate a tunnel vision effect: Focal managerial options often are favored in an evidentially unjustifiable manner. Study 1 concerns new product development, and demonstrates that a prototype that has become focal tends to be judged overly favorably, and is chosen for launch with unwarranted enthusiasm. Study 2 shows that this tunnel vision effect generalizes to judgments and decisions about general strategy. Study 3 focuses on the information search patterns underlying the effect, and Study 4 replicates the tunnel vision effect among experienced executives, and demonstrates the utility of a debiasing procedure. Data in all of the studies implicate selective processing as the driver of the tunnel vision effect, and further understanding of how selective processing affects choice. Several alternative operationalizations of the empirically tested debiasing procedure are discussed.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes.

    Volume (Year): 113 (2010)
    Issue (Month): 2 (November)
    Pages: 102-111

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:jobhdp:v:113:y:2010:i:2:p:102-111

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    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/obhdp

    Related research

    Keywords: Managerial decision making Information processing Decision bias Selective Hypothesis Testing;

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    1. Shane Frederick, 2005. "Cognitive Reflection and Decision Making," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 19(4), pages 25-42, Fall.
    2. Kurt A. Carlson & Margaret G. Meloy & J. Edward Russo, 2006. "Leader-Driven Primacy: Using Attribute Order to Affect Consumer Choice," Journal of Consumer Research, University of Chicago Press, vol. 32(4), pages 513-518, 03.
    3. Hsee, Christopher K & Leclerc, France, 1998. " Will Products Look More Attractive When Presented Separately or Together?," Journal of Consumer Research, University of Chicago Press, vol. 25(2), pages 175-86, September.
    4. Van Wallendael, Lori Robinson, 1989. "The quest for limits on noncomplementarity in opinion revision," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 43(3), pages 385-405, June.
    5. Steven Posavac & Frank Kardes & David Sanbonmatsu & Gavan Fitzsimons, 2005. "Blissful Insularity: When Brands are Judged in Isolation from Competitors," Marketing Letters, Springer, vol. 16(2), pages 87-97, April.
    6. Fox, Craig R. & Levav, Jonathan, 2000. "Familiarity Bias and Belief Reversal in Relative Likelihood Judgment," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 82(2), pages 268-292, July.
    7. Novemsky, Nathan & Schweitzer, Maurice E., 2004. "What makes negotiators happy? The differential effects of internal and external social comparisons on negotiator satisfaction," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 95(2), pages 186-197, November.
    8. Dhar, Ravi & Nowlis, Stephen M & Sherman, Steven J, 1999. " Comparison Effects on Preference Construction," Journal of Consumer Research, University of Chicago Press, vol. 26(3), pages 293-306, December.
    9. Simonson, Itamar & Kramer, Thomas & Young, Maia J., 2004. "Effect propensity," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 95(2), pages 156-174, November.
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