Receiving Other People's Advice: Influence and Benefit
Seeking advice is a basic practice in making real life decisions. Until recently, however, little attention has been given to it in either empirical studies or theories of decision making. The studies reported here investigate the influence of advice on judgment and the consequences of advice use for judgment accuracy. Respondents were asked to provide final judgments on the basis of their initial opinions and advice presented to them. The respondents’ weighting policies were inferred. Analysis of the these policies show that (a) the respondents tended to place a higher weight on their own opinion than on the advisor's opinion (the self/other effect); (b) more knowledgeable individuals discounted the advice more; (c) the weight of advice decreased as its distance from the initial opinion increased; and (d) the use of advice improved accuracy significantly, though not optimally. A theoretical framework is introduced which draws in part on insights from the study of attitude change to explain the influence of advice. Finally the usefulness of advice for improving judgment accuracy is considered.
|Date of creation:||Sep 2005|
|Date of revision:|
|Publication status:||Published in Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 2004, vol. 93, pp. 1-13.|
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