Cognitive biases are errors in reasoning or perception that can influence our judgment and decisions. They can affect how we use the OKR (Goals and Key Results) method and can lead to decision errors.
- Anchoring bias: this bias consists of relying on initial information to guide our judgment, even if this information is erroneous or incomplete. For example, by relying on erroneous estimates to define objectives or keys to results.
- Confirmation bias: This bias consists of seeking and privileging information that confirms our prejudices and ignoring those that contradict them. For example, by not taking into account data that shows that a goal is not being achieved.
- Uncertainty reduction bias: This bias involves searching excessively for information to reduce uncertainty, even though this can lead to information overload or wasted time. For example, spending too much time collecting data to define key goals or outcomes, instead of focusing on action.
- Success bias: This bias occurs when we underestimate the challenges and risks
associated with achieving a goal, based on our previous success. This can prevent us from setting ambitious goals and taking into account the real obstacles that stand in our way.
- Group bias : This is the tendency to conform to the opinions and beliefs of the group to which one belongs. This can limit creativity and innovation in goal setting and can also lead to a lack of individual accountability in achieving goals.
There are several ways to minimize cognitive biases in a team:
- Sensitizing team members to cognitive biases: By informing team members about the various types of cognitive biases and how they can influence decision-making, you can help them be more aware of their own biases and manage them more effectively.
- Implementing structured decision-making processes: By using structured decision-making processes, such as the Six Thinking Hats model, you can help team members focus on the facts and avoid being swayed by emotions or personal preferences.
- Encouraging diversity of thought and opinion: By encouraging diversity of thought and opinion, you can help team members consider different viewpoints and avoid getting trapped in their own “thought bubble”.
- Promoting collaboration and open dialogue: By encouraging collaboration and open dialogue, you can help team members express their ideas and exchange viewpoints in a constructive manner.
- Implementing quality control mechanisms: By implementing quality control mechanisms, such as peer review or cross-checks, you can help team members verify and validate their decisions before implementing them.
It is important to be aware of these cognitive biases and manage them to prevent them from affecting OKR implementation. It can be helpful to work as a team and gather the opinions of different people to avoid being influenced by these biases.