Trapped by a First Hypothesis

Trapped by a First Hypothesis

In this paper we propose that rudeness can affect judgement in critical situations by enhancing the tendency of decision-makers to engage in anchoring, one of the most robust and widespread cognitive biases.

In four experimental studies we test the impact of exposure to rudeness on anchoring in various tasks (e.g., medical diagnosis, judgement tasks, negotiation). Additionally, we identify negative arousal as the mediating process for the positive relationship between rudeness and anchoring, and subsequently identify factors that can counter this effect.

Across four studies we show that encounters with rudeness can increase anchoring, but that inducing individuals to take a broader perspective can alleviate this problem.

Research Team: Cooper, B., Giordano, C.R., Erez, A., Foulk, T.A., Reed, H. & Berg, K.
Current Status: Revise and Resubmit, Journal of Applied Psychology

Binyamin Cooper
Post-Doctoral Research Fellow

My research interests include…