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LESSONS TO BE LEARNED FROM ALP LEADERSHIP SPILL

Tim Millett
Published by Tim Millett
09 October 2013

The recent change in leadership of the Australian Labor Party has illuminated a number of behavioural biases that can have a significant impact on decision making.

Sometimes, rationality and statistics cannot override emotional and unconscious behavioural influences.

Last week’s example showed that congruence – the way that we are both driven and fooled by the need to understand our own behaviour – modifies the way we interpret behaviour or values.

The need to be treated justly and thereby have revenge was evident in the leadership spill. Studies of behaviour have revealed that when a person feels they have been treated unfairly, they tend to go to lengths to ensure that neither person is rewarded.

Most often, we are likely to vote for or engage in business with people that we like. However, this also means that once we ‘like’ a person we also seek evidence that confirms why we like them. Known as the ‘halo-effect’, it can be difficult to change such a positive assessment.

As humans, our experiences become our memories. In the case of Gillard vs Rudd, Australian people have a memory of Kevin Rudd and default to this rather than the experience of what it was like to live through Rudd’s previous prime ministership. Hindsight bias makes situations seem much simpler in retrospect.

The leadership spill provides two significant lessons for business – a business should think about how a person will be emotionally influenced, and how it may support them to rationalise their emotional decisions.

Source: http://www.womensagenda.com.au/career-agenda/leaders/four-lessons-on-decision-making-from-the-labor-leadership-spill/201307012424

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