Technique 1.81 Modified DOSPERT Test (Risk Taking)


The responses to the 42 statements below provide an indication of your risk-taking preferences around 5 risk categories, ie ethical, financial (subsets are gambling and investment), health and safety, recreational and social. Responded to each statement in 3 parts ie
a) the likelihood that you would engage in the described activity or behaviour, if you found yourself in that situation (possible answers vary from "extremely unlikely" to "extremely likely")
b) riskiness or risky perceptions (people often see risk in situations that contain uncertainty about what the outcomes or consequences will be; this is linked with the possibility of negative consequences. Riskiness is a very personal and intuitive notion, ie gut feeling; possible answers vary from "not at all risky" to "extremely risky")
c) perceived benefits (linked with risk is evaluating possible benefits that can be obtained from each situation and your reaction to them; possible answers vary from "no benefit" to "great benefit").

Therefore, each part (likelihood, riskiness and benefits) is graded into 1 of 7 possibilities (see notes at bottom of table that describes what each number means)
For example,

1. Admitting that your tastes are different from those of your friends S (social) 6 4 7

This means that the answers to statement 1 are "moderately likely", "moderately risky" and of "great benefit".

Greater preference to risk-taking in each of the 5 domains is indicated by high your scores in a) & c) and the lower scores in b). Conversely, greater risk aversion would be shown by low scores in a) & c) and high scores in b)

1. Admitting that your tastes are different from those of your friends S      
2. Going camping in the wilderness, beyond a campground R      
3. Betting a day's income at the horse races F/G      
4. Investing 10% of your annual income in a moderate growth diversified fund F/I      
5. Drinking heavily at a social function H/S      
6. Claiming some questionable deductions on your income tax return E      
7. Disagreeing with an authority figure on a major issue S      
8. Betting at day's income at a high-stake poker game F/G      
9. Having an affair with a married man/woman E      
10. Passing off somebody else's work as your own E      
11. Going down a ski run that is beyond your ability R      
12. Investing 5% of your annual income in a very speculative stock F/I      
13. Going white-water rafting in a dangerous river R      
14. Betting a day's income on the outcome of a sporting event F/G      
15. Engaging in unprotected sex H/S      
16. Revealing a friend's secret to somebody else E      
17. Driving a car without wearing a seat belt H/S      
18. Investing 10% of your annual income in a new business venture or speculative stock F/I      
19. Taking a skydiving class R      
20. Riding a motorcycle without a helmet H/S      
21. Choosing a career that you truly enjoy over a more secure and prestigious one S      
22. Speaking your mind about an unpopular issue in a meeting at work S      
23. Sunbaking without sunscreen H/S      
24. Bungee jumping off a tall building R      
25. Piloting a small plane R      
26. Walking home alone at night in a unsafe area of town H/S      
27. Moving to a city far away from your extended family S      
28. Starting a new career in your mid-30s S      
29. Leaving your young children alone at home while running an errand E      
30. Not returning a wallet you found that contains $200 E      
31. Buying an illegal drug for your own use H/S      
32. Cheating in an exam E      
33. Forging someone's signature E      
34. Visiting a developing country without pre-arranged travel and hotel accommodation R      
35. Arguing with a friend about an issue on which he or she has a very different point of view from you S      
36. Approaching your boss to ask for a raise S      
37. Telling a friend that his or her partner has made a pass at you S      
38. Investing 10% of your annual income in a conservative stock like government bonds F/I      
39. Shoplifting a small item like lipstick or a pen E      
40. Periodically engage in a dangerous sport like mountain climbing, skydiving, etc R      
41. Defending an unpopular issue that you believe in at a social occasion S      
42. Regularly eating high cholesterol food H/S      


i) E = Ethical; F = Financial (G = Gambling & I = Investment); H/S = Health/Safety; R= Recreational; S = Social
ii) Place a number in the cell (1 = extremely unlikely; 2 = moderately unlikely; 3 = somewhat unlikely; 4 = not sure; 5 = somewhat likely: 6 = moderately likely; 7 = extremely likely)
iii) Place a number in the cell (1 = not at all risky; 2 = slightly risky; 3 = somewhat risky; 4 = moderately risky; 5 = risky: 6 = very risky; 7 = extremely risky)
iv) Place a number in the cell (1 = no benefits at all; 2 = slight benefits; 3 = some benefits; 4 = moderately benefits; 5 = many benefits: 6 = large number of benefits; 7 = great benefits)

Most managers are good at understanding single, simple risk and at mitigating against it. However many struggle to understand multi-risks and their relationships to each other plus causality chains.

(sources: Weber et al 2002; Blais et al 2006)

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