Perception in Organization

 1. Definition: A cognitive information processing process that enables us to interpret and understand our environment

    Social perception: the information processing process of interpreting and understanding other people.

2. How Perception functions: the Social Information Processing Model. Four Stages:

Key concept: bounded rationality

(1). Selective Attention/Comprehension

(2). Encoding and Simplification: raw information is interpreted and translated into meaningful mental constructs

(3). Storage and Retention:

(4). Retrieval and Response


3. Fallacies in Social Perception

Man is a rationalizing animal


 4. Cognitive Dissonance Theory: Leon Festinger, 1957

    Cognitive Dissonance: an uncomfortable situation when a person simultaneously holds inconsistent/conflicting congnitions (ideas, beliefs, opinions).

    Festingers: people will reduce cognitive dissonance in the easiest way possible, usually by changing one or both cognitions.

 5. Impression management: the process of enhancing other people’s impression about oneself – short-term orientation   Facework: preserving, enhancing, and saving the face of self and others. – long-term orientation
 6. Organizational Perception and Memory
Attributions in Organization


Attribute Theory: how people trace the causes of the behavior of themselves and others


Internal attribution: attribute the individual internal factors as the causes of behavior.


External attribution: attribute external factors as the causes of behavior.


Fundamental attribution error: the tendency to make attributions to internal causes when explaining the behavior of others.


Self-serving bias: the tendency to attribute one’s own successes to internal causes and one’s failure to external causes.

Cultural Differences: Japan may be the opposite

Kelley’s Attribution Theory

Consistency: one’s behavior over time on one given tasks