How long will it take: Power biases time predictions

Weick, M. and Guinote, A. (2009) How long will it take: Power biases time predictions. In: Entscheidungen und Veraenderung in Arbeit, Organisation, und Wirtschaft. Facultas Publishing, Vienna ISBN 9873708904481. (Unpublished) (The full text of this publication is not available from this repository)

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Abstract

People tend to underestimate the time it takes to accomplish tasks. This bias known as the planning fallacy derives from the tendency to focus attention too narrowly on the envisaged goal and to ignore additional information that could make predictions more accurate and less biased. Drawing on recent research showing that power induces attentional focus, four studies tested the hypothesis that power strengthens the tendency to underestimate future task completion time. Across a range of task domains, and using multiple operationalizations of power, including actual control over outcomes (Study 1), priming (Studies 2 and 3), and individual differences (Study 4), power consistently led to more optimistic and less accurate time predictions. Support was found for the role of attentional focus as an underlying mechanism for those effects. Differences in optimism, self-efficacy, and mood did not contribute to the greater bias in powerful individuals' forecasts. We discuss the implications of these findings for institutional decision processes and occupational health.

Item Type: Conference or workshop item (Paper)
Subjects: H Social Sciences
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Psychology
Depositing User: Mario Weick
Date Deposited: 10 Dec 2012 11:16
Last Modified: 10 May 2013 09:34
Resource URI: http://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/32473 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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