Factors That Influence Perception Essay


Discuss the factors that limit and distort our Perception and Contribute to bias. What can individuals and Organisations do to overcome this?



Perception is called a process that makes the individual organises the ideas & interprets the sensory impression to give meaning to the environment. The behaviour of the individual in an organisation depends on the perception of what the reality is. It is not based on the reality itself. The focus is given more on the behavioural importance.

Information is received, stored and interpreted by us all through our lives. Certain beliefs & values are established by us that create a mind-set. A confirmation bias is developed by us in order to make a confirmation of these beliefs that are established. The information that we gather does not fit with the pre-existed information. Here we want to fit the new information with the pre-existed information. We also do not accept the new information and we do not create new beliefs because we feel that there will be conflicts with pre-existed beliefs (James, 2012). Thus bias tends to bend the information in order to fit a mind-set that may be in favour of or may be against the things. This leads to the unreasonable judgement. Thus bias is considered as the opinions that are conceived in the mind unreasonably.

Factors that influence perception

There are three factors that influence perception. They are the perceiver, target and the situation. The attitude, motive, interest, experience and the expectation of the perceiver influence the perception. The targets that influence perception are background, similarity, size and proximity (Brass, 2012). The situation refers to the situations related to social, the setting of work and the time factors.

The individual perception refers to the making judgements about the other individuals. The attribute theory of the perception discusses the observation of the behaviour made by an individual. The individual seeks to determine the behaviour caused by the internal or external factors. The internal factor refers to the personal control of the individual and the external factor refers to the external force that makes the individual behave in a particular way (Daft, 2010). The temperament of underestimating the influence of the factors of outside force and the overestimation of the factors of the internal forces affect in the process of making a judgment on the behaviour of the people. Thus the individual carries a tendency to attribute his or her own success to in the internal factor and puts blame on the external factors for the failures (kepion.com, 2017).

The attribution theory discusses the shortcuts used by the individual in judging the other individuals. The individual interprets selectively what he or she sees. This is made on the basis of the observation of interest, background, experience & attitude. The perception is also made on the basis of the general impression on the individual based on a single characteristic. The individual perception also evaluates the characteristics of a person and compare them with the other individuals (Ferrel, Ferrell, & Fradrich, 2008). This makes an analysis of the rank of the individuals based on the characteristics of the individuals. The perception also encourages to attribute the characteristics of one individual with other individuals. The perception also leads to judging the individual on the group’s perception. This becomes very stereotyping in nature.

Value conflicts

The management of the organisation faces difficulties to recognise & to respond to the value conflicts. The value conflicts in the organisation are created when the organisation remains blind to the social problems. The decision makers & the leaders of the organisation believe that there is to protect the stability of the system of the organisation by taking care of the principles within their pattern of hierarchy. The systems of rules & regulations defined by the management of the organisation become the principles of the behaviour of the employees of the organisation (George, 2017). The rules & the regulations of the organisation defines how the people behave in the organisation. The management tries to ensure that fairness & justice is there in the organisation by the enforcement of the policies, rules & the regulations.

Fear to understand

Lack of communication also creates problems in the organisation to build a community. The objective of the community is to share the vision and goals of the organisation in order to achieve the goals of the organisation. Fear of difference and mistrust create a problem for the individuals and the organisation to build community in the organisation.

Role perceptions

Employees in the organisation require appropriate rile perception in order to perform their jobs in an appropriate way. The perception here refers to the clear understanding of the job responsibility that has been assigned to the employees (Drucker, Leadership vs. Management, 2014). The perception ranges from the clarity of the role to the ambiguity of role. The improvement of the performance of the employees depends on their knowledge about the needs of the organisation. The priority of the employees is to know about the expectations of the organisation from them.

The clarity of the role of the employees exists in three forms. The clear role perception of the employees is found when the employees understand the specific duties assigned to them. They must know that for what jobs they are accountable for (James, 2012). The employees are not judged on the basis of their responsibilities and the employees do not know the tasks & expectations of the performance. The problem arises between the quantities of service to the quality of the service.

Clarity of the role helps the employees of an organisation to decide the ways to allocate time & resources. The organisation will get to know how to develop the skills of the employees and how to meet the demand the customers & the suppliers (George, 2017). The role clarity will help to understand the pattern behaviour and procedure for the accomplishment of the assigned tasks.

Role perception helps the employees to direct the efforts so that they can perform their work efficiently. The employees with no role perception will perform wrongly and accomplishment of the task will be difficult.

Role clarity is important in the organisation. This helps to bring coordination with the employees of the organisation with the other stakeholders of the organisation. (Weiss, 2009) Role clarity also helps the employees to be motivated as the employees understand that the efforts made by them for the accomplishment of the task will bring the expected outcomes. The required efforts are confidently put by the employees to bring the expected outcomes.

Applications of perception in the organisation

Perception is also found in an organisation when the interview is conducted. This has been found that perception does not help to take appropriate judgement. In the context of the performance, this has also been found that every individual wants to validate his or her perception of reality even though she or he commits mistakes. The prophecy of the self-fulfilment is formulated on the basis of the expectations that determines the behaviour. (Shady Abd El-Nasser, 2010) This is used as one of the important techniques used by the managers in the organisation. The organisation evaluates the performance of the employees on the basis of perceptions.

The connection of perception with decision making of an individual

The decision is made by an individual when he or she gets a chance to choose one between two or more number of alternatives. In this process, the problem is found in between the current states of affairs with that of the desired state. Thus it is very important for the individual to make his or her decision-making process appropriate.

Decision-making process required in organisation

Rational decision making is very important for an organisation. The organisation requires following the steps defined below for the rational decision making in the organisation.

  • Defining problem is very important for the organisation.
  • The next step is the identification of the criteria of decision
  • Development of the alternatives
  • Evaluation of the alternative
  • Selection of the best alternative

Assumption related to the rational decision makin

  • The problem should clear & very ambiguous. The clarity of the problem will help to develop rational decisions.
  • The decision makers should have the knowledge and should identify the relevant criteria the acceptable alternatives.
  • The alternative criteria should be ranked and weighted in the order of merit.
  • The decision criteria should be constant and weights assigned to it must be stable.
  • The choice of the alternative will produce the most accepted perceived values.

The decision making can be improved and be creative when the organisation or the individual focuses on three important areas. They are expertise, skills of the creative thinking and motivation related to the intrinsic task.

The individuals make decisions without focusing on all the complexities of the problems. Perception is always used in the process of the decision making when there is a high degree of uncertainty. Here the facts are very limited and data is used less (aasw.asn.au, 2017). The pressure of less time for making a decision is also a factor in the process of decision.

Issues related in the process of the decision making

The problems identification is made based on the vision problems in stead problems of the importance. The problem identification is affected by the self-interest of the decision makers. The address of the problem is made in the best interest of the decision maker (Treacy, 2015). This reflects the ability to perceive & attack the problems.

Instead of taking appropriate measures for the solution, the decision makers put incremental efforts. They do not make comprehensive efforts. The decision makers compare the alternatives in steading of measuring the values of them. This results in an unnecessary examination and finding their outputs. It shows that the decision makers take little steps and limit themselves to the comparisons.

Biases in the process of the decision making

The shortcuts initiated by the decision makers in the process of the decision making create huge error & bias. The individuals become more optimistic and that results in overconfidence bias. It happens when there is low in the intellect & interpersonal abilities. The bias related to anchoring focuses on the information gathered in the initial time (Weiss, 2009). The biases are also found when we seek our process of the decision making in the past and want to use them in the present. That contradicts with the judgement of the past. Another bias occurs when the people make their judgement based on the information available to them (Shady Abd El-Nasser, 2010). The bias in the decision making is also seen when the decision makers assess the occurrence of the identical situation. The bias is also seen when negative information of the previous decision is not escalated. There is also a bias found in the decision making which is called hindsight bias. We believe that we could have predicted the consequences after the consequences are known actually.

Differences in the decision making styles of the individuals

There are different styles of the decision-making process of the individuals. The individual focuses on the directive style seeks rationality and has a low tolerance for the ambiguity. The analytical style encourages people to focus tolerance for ambiguity instead of rational decision making (James, 2012). The conceptual style of decision making encourages people to be broad and seek for many alternatives. The behavioural style is used by the people who prefer to work with others.

Gender also plays an important role in the process of decision making. The women take a long time to make a decision and they analyse the decision before & after the fact.

Conflicts based on the different values of the cultures

The conflict based on the different values of the cultures is found in the workplace. The leaders of the organisation find it difficult for managing the conflicts of the values of the different cultures. The organisation develops systems to resolve the conflicts on a particular culture. The single system cannot help the leaders to understand the people of the different cultures in the organisation and resolve the conflicts in a just and fair manner ( Williams, 2007). Thus the individual perception cannot work out here. The leaders should focus on seeking a solution that will focus on resolving the problems. The task of determining an appropriate process is necessary for the leaders. But the task is not easy. It is not easy to deal people from different cultures in one organisation.


The perception of the individuals is based on their seeing & believing. The perception of the individuals from their work place influence their productivity. The individual perceptions are also influenced by the turnover, satisfaction of the job and the absenteeism.

Before making any decision individuals think & reason. The rational decision-making process does not occur always. Thus for the improvement of the decision making it is important to analyse the situation and to remain aware of the biases. The rational analysis should be combined with intuition. The manager of the organisation should not assume that the specific decision-making style of him or her is always perfect. The manager should enhance the creativity so that decision making will be unique and appropriate.


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