Fundamental Attribution Error

Assume you and one of your team member come late into an important meeting.

Would you apply the same yardstick in judging the action of your team member as you would to your own action?

The fundamental attribution error is the tendency to overemphasize personal characteristics and ignore situational factors in judging others’ behavior.

In other words, you tend to cut yourself a break while holding others 100 percent accountable for their actions.

In the above example, a manager can avoid attribution bias by:

  1. focusing on the list of positive qualities exhibited by an individual rather than the single negative behaviour
  2. developing mindfulness through empathy
  3. becoming more gracious
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