The Usefulness of an Understanding of Perception in the Workplace

The Usefulness of an Understanding of Perception in the Workplace

  • Submitted By: frankgopie
  • Date Submitted: 10/29/2008 8:22 PM
  • Category: Business
  • Words: 1138
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HRM 210 Lecturer: Donna Barbara-Ann Chapman

Assignment #2 Date: Sat 11th Oct. 11, 08

Your boss has recently heard a little about Perception and Attribution Theory and has asked you to explain to him in more details focusing on the possible usefulness in managing his department. How do you address this request?

Let us begin by defining Perception.


Perception can be defined as follows

“The process through which people receive, organise, and interpret information from their environment,”

Shermerhorn, Hunt and Osborne

One can then identify the different stages of perception as follows:

Stage 1. Attention and selection

The human mind is continually bombarded with information and as a result it has to

make selections or choices as to what stimulus(i) it considers important at that instant. This is

influenced by interest, needs, aesthetics or biology. When it does this it selects what to bring into

the fore-ground and what remains in the background .This is what can be described as attention

and selection.

Stage 2. Organisation

At the next stage of perception the mind need to make sense of all that is happening i.e. make

sense of the chaos .This is achieved by categorising the information that is selected. and placing

them into folder in the brain as follows.

(a) Binary Opposition – all things are grouped in pairs

(b) already formed social categories

(c) By similarities

Stage 3. Interpretation

This is the process of evaluating the information in the various folders in the mind, larger

folders (more complete and accurate) are given more importance than smaller folders(less

complete and inaccurate) and we are more comfortable with them.

Stage 4. Retrieval

Finally retrieval is necessary for perception. It is a combination of two things, retention and

memory. Not all of what is selected makes its way into long term memory and therefore may not

be retrievable. What...

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