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Three Ways To Avoid Bias In Decision-Making

Source | | Jarret Jackson

We are all biased. Our brains were designed to be. We categorize information to store it, which means we have to make judgments. Those judgments rely on our past experiences, which, in turn shape our perspectives. They help us figure out what is safe (generally, what is known) versus where to be cautious (generally, what is unknown). So, bias always plays a role in decisions.

Here’s an example of one type of bias, risk aversion, at work: We believe every day (and in most strategy meetings) that because our current business model seemed to work yesterday, it would be risky to change it today. In other words, risk aversion tilts us toward keeping the status quo, assuming that the future will look like the past. Given what we’ve seen in 2020, is that a safe assumption to make? Or do we need to re-think the role our biases have played in our decision-making?

Bias is not something we can easily avoid or stop. It is, however, something we can keep in check – and use to our advantage to make better decisions. Here are three techniques you can use to try and be thoughtful and open, keeping at least some bias out of the equation.

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