Making decisions
Making decisions

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7.4 Avoiding decision traps

While it is not possible to change our human natures, it is possible to immunise ourselves to some extent against common decision traps. Useful strategies include:

  • Get in the habit of reframing problems. For example, if you are considering strategies for avoiding a loss of €10,000 try asking yourself if you would feel differently if you consider them as strategies for making a gain of €10,000.

  • Think about the information you have relied on – to what extent have you been biased towards information which is easily retrievable or available? How may this have affected your thinking?

  • Ask yourself whether your understanding of the problem or the decision outcome became anchored at an early stage. Try and imagine radically different approaches.

  • Consider if it is possible that your own or others' concern to be cast in a good light is preventing an honest appraisal of failures.

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