OBch5 - Robbins Organizational Behavior Chapter Five...

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Robbins: Organizational Behavior Chapter Five PERCEPTION AND INDIVIDUAL DECISION MAKING LEARNING OBJECTIVES After studying this chapter, students should be able to: 1. Explain how two people can see the same thing and interpret it differently 2. List the three determinants of attribution 3. Describe how shortcuts can assist in or distort our judgment of others 4. Explain how perception affects the decision making process 5. Outline the six steps in the rational decision making model 6. Describe the actions of the boundedly rational decision maker 7. Identify the conditions in which individuals are most likely to use intuition in decision making 8. Describe four styles of decision making 9. Define heuristics , and explain how they bias decisions 10. Contrast the three ethical decision criteria CHAPTER OVERVIEW Perception Individuals behave in a given manner based not on the way their external environment actually is but, rather, on what they see or believe it to be. An organization may spend millions of dollars to create a pleasant work environment for its employees. However, in spite of these expenditures, if an employee believes that his or her job is lousy, that employee will behave accordingly. It is the employee’s perception of a situation that becomes the basis for his or her behavior. The employee who perceives his/her supervisor as a hurdle reducer who helps him/ her do a better job and the employee who sees the same supervisor as “big brother, closely monitoring every motion, to ensure that I keep working” will differ in their behavioral responses to their supervisor. The difference has nothing to do with the reality of the supervisor’s actions; the difference in employee behavior is due to different perceptions. The evidence suggests that what individuals perceive from their work situation will influence their productivity more than will the situation itself. Whether or not a job is actually interesting or challenging is irrelevant. Whether or not a manager successfully plans and organizes the work of his or her employees and actually helps them to structure their work more efficiently and effectively is far less important than how employees perceive the manager’s efforts. Similarly, issues like fair pay for work performed, the validity of performance appraisals, and the adequacy of working conditions are not judged by employees in a way that assures common perceptions, nor can we be assured that individuals will interpret conditions about their jobs in a favorable light. Therefore, to be able to influence productivity, it is necessary to assess how workers perceive their jobs. Absenteeism, turnover, and job satisfaction are also reactions to the individual’s perceptions. Dissatisfaction with working conditions or the belief that there is a lack of promotion opportunities in the organization are judgments based on attempts to make some meaning out of one’s job. The employee’s conclusion that a job is good or bad is an interpretation. Managers must spend time understanding how each individual interprets reality and, where
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