Some Ways To Handle Cognitive Biases

The below table summarises the main cognitive biases; with some ways to handle them

Principal bias (definition)
Related bias
What is it
How to handle
Confirmation
(failing to consider alternatives, ignoring dissenting views, going for an easy option, etc)
- Affected heuristic
- Group think
- Self-interest bias
- Authority bias
- Strong preference for one answer
- Failing to look at alternatives and anti-thesis
- Not approaching dissenting views with an open mind
- Constructive confrontation
- Dialectic argument, thesis, anti-thesis, synthesis
- Team composition (to carry diversity, eg views, background. etc
- Role-playing
Anchoring
(blind preference for initial data/pattern)
- Saliency bias
- Neglect of reversal to mean/
compounding
- Assuming an initial data range or increased/decreased pattern is a whole range that will continue (mental numerical stickiness) - Develop alternative hypothesis (anti-thesis)
- Hard-core data gathering & analysis (including scenario planning)
- What are the team processes
Loss aversion
(failure to ignore costs already spent, ie sunk, or any asymmetrical valuing of losses and gains)
- Sunk cost fallacy
- Endowment effect
- Account book loss fear
- Mental numerical stickiness or any kind of asymmetric value of losses or gains - Clear forward-looking mindset
- good analytical tools (NPV analysis valuing options, Bayesian thinking)
Availability
(preference for existing mental maps &/or influenced by most recent facts or events)
- Substitution bias
- Overemphasis given to current events
- Use the map or story we have at hand rather than investing in understanding the new complex situation - Value of additional information
- Explicit options to wait vs to decide now
Over-optimism
(shown by overconfidence, illusion of control, failure to contemplate negative outcomes)
- Overconfidence
- Illusion of control
- Disaster neglect
- Underestimating low probability events - Explicit extreme downside case
- Pre-mortems

(source: Charles Conn et al 2018)

Search For Answers

designed by: bluetinweb

We use cookies to provide you with a better service.
By continuing to use our site, you are agreeing to the use of cookies as set in our policy. I understand