The Hidden Traps In Decision Making

This Discussion is based on the article, “The Hidden Traps in Decision Making” by Hammond, Keeney, and Raiffa from Harvard Business Review, which can be found in your coursepack. Make sure to read this article before starting the Discussion.

Hammond, J. S., Keeney, R. L., & Raiffa, H. (2006, Jan.). The hidden traps in decision making. Harvard Business Review, 84(1), 118–126.

Learning how to perform analytics is only step one in the road to making correct decisions. There are many traps along the way that may lead you down the wrong path, even if you know which analytical methodology you need to use. In this article, the authors describe various psychological traps that you may encounter.

For this Discussion, select one of these traps listed EXCEPT the sunk cost trap. Then, do the following:

  1. From your professional experience, provide a real, specific example where you believe decision makers (you or other managers) encountered the trap.
  2. Explain why you think your example fits the trap you selected. Remember, there are many bad decisions that are not the result of a decision trap. Does your example have the characteristics of the decision trap you selected? Start by providing a definition of the trap according to the article and explain why your example fits.
  3. Provide specific recommendations to your organization to identify and prevent the trap from occurring in the future.

Again, do not use the sunk cost trap.

In your replies to fellow classmates, look for similarities to your organization. If you have experienced similar events, comment on how your organization handled the situation.

Please use the format below for your answers so everyone can easily follow your answers to all the questions (copy and paste to your post; using the template below is part of the requirements).

Trap name

What happened: First, describe the event/situation.

Why it fits this trap: Define the trap. Explain why you think this situation fits the trap definition.

Recommendations: Describe how the situation can be identified in the future or what your organization should do to prevent it from happening again.

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