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Chapter 3

Chapter 3 BUS 2090.docx

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University of Guelph
BUS 2090
Hassan Wafai

Chapter 3 Individuals, Groups & Organizations Perception, Attribution & Diversity What is Perception? Perception: The process of interpreting the messages of our senses to provide order & meaning to the environment  Helps sort out & organize the complex & varied input received by our senses of sight, touch, sound, taste & hearing  Based on interpretation not reality Components of Perception Perception has 3 components… 1. The Perceiver  The perceivers needs, experience & emotions can affect his/her perceptions of a target  Past experience is very important and can make the perceiver develop expectations that will affect current perceptions  Our needs can affect our perceptions by unconsciously influencing us to perceive what we wish to perceive  Our emotions can cause us to misinterpret Perceptual Defense: The tendency for the perceptual system to defend the perceiver against unpleasant emotions  “See what we want to see” 2. The Target  Perception involves interpretation & adding meaning to the target 3. The Situation  A situation can add info about the target Social Identity Theory Social Identity Theory: People form perceptions of themselves based on their characteristics & membership in social categories  When asked, “who are you” you will usually respond in term of what categories you belong to (Canadian, student, mother etc.)  Our sense of self is based on our personal identity and a social identity  Our personal identity is based on our personal, unique characteristics (abilities. Interests, traits)  Social identity is based on our perception that we belong to certain groups (gender, nationality, occupation etc.)  People categorize themselves and others to make sense of and understand social environment  Once we categorize people we seem to see members of that category as having attributes of that category = “Prototypes”  In addition to forming self-perceptions based on social memberships, we also form perceptions of others based on their membership in social categories  B/c social identities are relational & comparative A Model of the Perceptual Process Bruner’s Perceptional Model  Bruner says when a perceiver encounters an unfamiliar target, the perceiver is very open to the informational cues contained in the target & the situation surrounding it  In this unfamiliar state the perceiver really needs info on which to base perceptions  Gradually perceiver will receive familiar cues that enable him to make a basic categorization of the target  Now perceiver begins to seek out cues to confirm categorization  Early categorization can be changed if cant find any cues to confirm 3 Important Characteristics of the Perceptual process… 1. Perception is selective  Perceivers don't use ALL available cues 2. Perceptual Constancy  The tendency for a target to be perceived the same way across situations over time 3. Perceptual Consistency  Tendency to select, ignore & distort cues in such a manner that they fit together to form a homo picture of the target Basic Biases in Person Perception Primacy & Recency Effects Primacy Effect: The tendency of a perceiver to rely on early cues or first impressions Recency Effects: The tendency for a perceiver to rely on recent cues or last impressions Reliance on Central Traits Central Traits: Personal characteristics of a target person that are of particular interest to a perceiver  People form perceptions based around personal characteristics of the target that are of special interest to them  The centrality of the traits depends on the perceiver’s interests and the situation  Attractiveness & height have been found to be related to better job performance Implicit Personality Traits Implicit Personality Traits: Personal theories that people have about which personality characteristics go together  E.g. You think hardworking people are also honest Projection Projection: The tendency for perceivers to attribute their own thoughts & feelings to others  People often assume that others are like themselves  In some cases, projection is efficient and sensible perception strategy but sometimes can lead to perceptual difficulties Stereotyping Stereotyping: The tendency to generalize about people in a certain social category and ignore variations among them  Might be by age, gender, ethnicity, social class, race, occupation etc.  Not all stereotypes are unfavorable  People evoke stereotypes w/ very little info  Not all stereotypes are inaccurate Attribution: Perceiving Causes & Motives Attribution: The process by which causes or motives are assigned to explain people’s behaviour  Many rewards & Punishments in organizations are based on judgements about what really caused a target person to behave in a certain way  Must determine whether the behaviour was caused by dispositional or situational factors Dispositional Factors: Explanations for behaviour based on a person’s personality or intellect Situational Factors: Explanations for behaviour based on a person’s external situation/environment 3 implicit questions guide our decisions as to whether we should attribute behaviour to dispositional or situational factors… 1. Consistency Cues  These cues reflect how consistently a person engages in behaviour over time  High consistency leads to dispositional attributions  Low consistency leads to situational attribut
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