Focus induced tunnel vision in managerial judgment and decision making: The peril and the antidote
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.
Volume (Year): 113 (2010)
Issue (Month): 2 (November)
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