Caution Tape–Little Bias Spoils the Batch

“All of us show bias when it comes to what information we take in. We typically focus on anything that agrees with the outcome we want.” Noreena Hertz

It is hard for me to trust my judgement when I have a personal bias that clouds my vision.  Even harder is to recognize what bias I possess. I like the way I think, and the consequent judgements I make. Who wouldn’t like having things their own way?

However, when my decisions affect others, I must be aware of my personal biases. I don’t have many, but I have to admit I have a few. Mine are not race or gender related, but they are biases that I picked up from my experiences. I have a great bias against religious authority figures. I have seen them hurt people. I have been harmed by them myself. So when I have to make a decision, for instance, about hiring a person from a strong religious background, or an unbeliever, I might choose to select the unbeliever. I may need to review the qualifications with someone else to be sure that my bias did not pervade my decision. The unbeliever may still be the better candidate for the job, but after confirming with another who does not share my bias, I will have more confidence that I have made a fair judgement call on whom to hire.

“I think perfect objectivity is an unrealistic goal; fairness, however, is not.” Michael Pollan


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