Role of Perception in the Decision Making Process

Write a paper examining role of perception in the decision-making process. Use format below:

  1. what is perception?
  2. how can a person’s perception of others impact an organizations behavior?
  3. what are the positive and negative effects of using perceptive shortcuts when judging others?
  4. how are decisions in real world organizations made?
  5. how can our perceptions shape ethical or moral decisions?

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What is the Role of Perception in the Decision Making Process

What is perception?

Perception is the process by which people acquire, interpret, select and organize sensory information to give meaning to their environment. Perception is important because people’s behavior is based on their perception of what is considered real or unreal. Therefore, the world that is perceived is the world that important behaviorally. People gather information about the world and use actions to interact with it. Any perceptual deficits lead to profound deficits in action and thus affect those impacted by these actions. Perception is affected by the perceiver’s attitudes, motives, interests, expectations and experiences. The situation and target can also influence perception. Perceptual information is important in the decision making process. Most decision makers use perception to evaluate, create and choose from a set of options. Perception creates our experience of the world around us and influences how we act within a given environment (Santagata, & Yeh, 2016). Organizations rely on the choices that are made through perceptual models for their success. Right and correct choices lead to business success while wrong and negative choices cause failure.

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How a person’s perception of others impact an organization’s behavior

In organizational behavior, perception helps shape a person’s personality and character. This process influences how people act in certain situations. This often affects how they respond to certain things like stressful situations, creativity or their individual performance. Perception is complex. It is the primary reason why different individuals tend to perceive the same situation in different ways (Smits et al 2014). Once we understand the perceptual process, we can understand why certain people behave as they do. Research studies show that what employees perceive from their situation at work influences their productivity. Absenteeism, turnover and job satisfaction are influenced by employee’s perception of the job.

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Selective perception involves employees selectively interpreting what they see based on their interests, experience, background and attitudes. This process allows individuals to speed-read others but risks drawing inaccurate conclusions. Wrongful perception will lead to poor or negative decisions that will lead to the organization’s failure. The employee’s behavior towards others reflects the organization culture. This in turn, affects the overall organization’s behavior. An individual’s perception of other’s affects an organization’s behavior through influencing the decisions and judgments made by the employees who make up the organization (Pantano et al 2017). Based on false information, perception can cause employees in an organization to make wrong choices. How people perceive others has a powerful impact on the organizational behavior because all behavior is reciprocal. One incorrect perception about another person’s intentions can have a synergetic effect on organizational behavior.  It is therefore important to understand that two people can see similar things and interpret differently, perception impacts all decision making and we need to have a rational decision making model to eliminate perceptual biases.

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Positive and negative effects of using perceptive shortcuts when judging others

Effects of perception can be positive or negative. Perception helps organizations to make the right decisions when those involved respects each other’s perspective. Here, decisions are made based on the better option. In cases where employees have negative perception, they tend to underestimate others leading to wrongful decision making. Perceptive shortcuts that have a negative or positive effect on the organization include selective perception, halo effect, contrast effect and stereotyping (Pantano et al 2017). In selective perception, the individual will receive information on bits and pieces that will lead to stimuli that is ambiguous. The person will consequently make decisions made on interpretations based on interest, attitude, background, and the partial information that has been received. The halo effect is seen in individuals that refer to someone from a particular group, geographical area, or social circle based on their intelligence, appearance or sociability. In contrast effect, an individual’s perception is affected by the person that they have recently had an encounter with. This can either enhance or reduce the performance in an organization (Valentine, & Godkin, 2019). Stereotyping leads to individuals having traits or performing in relation to a particular group that they belong. When employees use any of these shortcuts in judging others, the impact of these decisions can lead to positive or negative effects to the organization.

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How decisions in real world organizations are made

Simply put, decision making is the art of choosing between two or more options or courses of action. The process involves choosing between all the possible solutions to a problem. The main decision making styles are analytical, conceptual, behavioral and directive. Most decisions in the real world are made through either an intuitive or reasoned process, or a combination of the two processes. Intuition involves using your gut feeling while reasoning involves using the facts and figures present to take possible course of action. More complicated decisions tend to require a more formal, structured approach. This approach usually involves both intuition and reasoning. It is imperative to be cautious of spontaneous responses to a situation. In most organizations, shareholders collectively elect executive board members who make high-level decisions about the direction of the organization. This board then appoints top managers in the organization, such as the CEO. In most cases, the shareholders have to approve the decisions that are made by the executive board.

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How our perceptions shape ethical or moral decisions

Ethical perception involves individual recognition of a moral issue and realizing that you are the moral agent. The process of ethical perception is the tool and catalyst that drives the entire ethical decision making process. The first step in making any decision that is ethically responsible is determining all the facts of the situation and thorough scrutinizing all possible solutions and their outcomes. Ethical decisions are made based on evaluation and choosing from alternatives in a manner that is in sync and consistent with ethical principles. In the process of making ethical decisions, it is important to perceive and eliminate unethical options and choose the best ethical alternative (Valentine, & Godkin, 2019).

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The ethical criteria for ethical decisions are utilitarianism, justices and rights. The principles off ethical decision making are autonomy, justice, non-maleficence, fidelity and beneficence. By critically exploring the dilemma in which to choose from, these principles may give one a better understanding of the conflicting issues leading to moral decisions.

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Conclusively, in relation to decision making, perception affects our way of thinking. Perception guides us on how to deal with situations that set us in a dilemma. Decisions are often made based on our experiences, interests, attitudes and present facts. Most decision makers use perception to evaluate, create and choose from a set of options. Perception creates our experience of the world around us and influences how we act within a given environment.

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