PERCEPTIONS“ You become what you thinketh”“ If everyone perceived everything the same way, things would be a lot simpler” -Moorhead & Griffin
DEFINITIONS• STEPHEN ROBBINS• “ Perception is a process by which individual’s organise and interpret the sensory impressions in order to give meaning to their environment.”• FRED LUTHANS• “ Perception is an important mediating cognitive process through which persons make interpretations of the stimulus or situation they are forced with.”
DEFINITIONS…• UDAI PAREEK & OTHERS• “ Perception can be defined as the process of receiving, selecting, organising, checking and reacting to sensory stimuli or data”.• In general, it can be defined as “ a process that involves seeing, receiving, selecting, organising, interpreting and giving meaning to the environment”.
MEANING• Perceptions differ from person to person.• Each individual perceives the same situation differently.• Group perceptions can influence one’s perception.• Individuals organise and interpret things based on their past experiences and the important values they consider important.• Employees tend to behave and act on certain things on the basis of their perception.
NATURE OF PERCEPTION• 1) Perception is the process by which an individual gives meaning to the environment.• 2) It is a cognitive and psychological process. The manner in which a person perceives the environment affects his behaviour. There can be no behaviour without perception and perception lies at the base of every human action.• 3) People’s action, emotions, thoughts and feelings are triggered by their perceptions of their surroundings.
• 4) Since perception refers to the acquisition of specific knowledge about objects or events at any particular moment, it occurs whenever stimuli activate the sense organs.• 5) Though perception has been defined in a variety of ways, it basically refers to the manner in which a person experiences the world.• 6) Perception is an almost automatic process and works in much the same way
• 7) A stimulus that is not perceived has no effect on behaviour.• 8) Perception is a process that operates constantly between us and reality.• 9) Since perception is subjective process, different people may perceive the same environment differently. So perception is like beauty, that lies in the eyes of the beholder.
• 10)Perception involves the creation of gestalts.• 11)Perception is a unique interpretation of the situation, not an exact recording of the situation.• 12)Perception is more complex and much broader than sensation.
IMPORTANCE OF PERCEPTION• Perception plays a very important role in Perception plays a very important shaping the personality of an individual.• Perception is central in interpreting the world around us.• Perception affects the outcome of our behaviour because we act on the basis of what we see.• Managers should be able to distinguish between a perceived world and the reality.• An understanding of perception is important to understand and control the
• The importance of perception in managerial behaviour are :• i) Attitude formation : Perceiving events and people is critical in attitude formation. Perception creates a basis for our attitudes, opinions, feelings, beliefs and values.• ii) Relationship base : the manager’s relationship with others are based on perceptions of their basic natures and motivations. Managers identify the perceptual structures and implicit personality of employees before making work relations.
• iii) Effective communication :Any message must be received and interpreted before the communication attempt is complete. Communication remains ineffective if it does not accomplish what the source intends.• iv) Employment interview :Interviewers make perceptual judgments, draw impressions and arrive at conclusions about the applicants. Thus perception is a major input in their decision.
• v) Performance evaluation :An employee’s performance appraisal is very much dependent on the perceptual outlook. The evaluator forms a general impression of an employee’s work. Thus, the perception process significantly influences the appraisal outcome.• vi) Employee effort : In many organisations, assessment of an employee’s effort is a subjective judgment which is susceptible to perceptual distortions and bias.
• vii) Employees loyalty :When evaluating an employee’s loyalty, a manager is involved with person’s perception. This is an important judgement that managers make about employees.• viii) Organisational goals :The interpretation and accomplishment of organisational goals again depend on the philosophies and ideologies of those who are expected to pursue them.
• ix) Workers’ rights : The interpretation of workers’ rights and responsibilities is also dependent on the ideological motives and beliefs of managers.• x) Employees unions :Perception plays a vital role in creating a better understanding of unions by management and vice-versa.
PERCEPTUAL PROCESS• Perception is an intellectual process.• Perception is the basic cognitive or psychological process.• Perception is subjective process.• Perception consists of several sub- processes.
PERCEPTUAL PROCESS…Perceptual Perceptual Perceptual throughputs inputs Outputs Stimuli Actions Receiving->Selecting->Organising->Interpreting Simplified process of perception
• Perceptual inputs – Objects, Events and people. All those things in the setting where events occur or contribute to the occurrence of events can be termed as Perceptual inputs.• Perceptual Mechanism -involves three elements viz. selection of stimuli, organisation of stimuli and interpretation of stimuli.• Perceptual outputs –Attitudes, Opinions, Feelings & Values.
BASIC ELEMENTS IN THE PERCEPTUAL STIMULI ENVIRONMENTAL STIMULI Objects, events or people OBSERVATION (SENSES) Taste, Hearing, Touch, Smell, SightPERCEPTUAL SELECTIONExternal Factors Internal FactorsSize, intensity, PersonalityContrast, Motion, LearningRepetition, Novelty MotivationFamiliarity Self concept, PERCEPTUAL ORGANISATION beliefs etc Perceptual Grouping, Continuity Proximity, Closure, Similarity INTERPRETATION Perceptual defense, Stereotyping, Halo effect, Projection, Expectancy RESPONSE Effects, Internal versus External Convert, Attitudes, Overt, Causes, Caused for success and Motivations, Feelings etc. failures
FACTORS INFLUENCING PERCEPTION• Perception is influenced by a variety of individuals and situational factors. Any perceptual event has three components viz. – a perceiver, the person perceived and the situational context in which the perception is occurring. Let’s explore each of these under following headings :• 1. Attributes of the person perceived• 2. Attributes of the perceiver and• 3. Attributes of the situation.
ATTRIBUTES OF THE PERSONPERCEIVED• The first major influence on perception is of the target, that is the person perceived. In particular, the following attributes of target can be identified:• i) Physical appearance• ii) Verbal and non verbal communication• iii) Status• iv) Occupation• v) Personal characteristics
ATTRIBUTES OF THE PERCEIVER• Several attributes unique to our personalities can affect how we see others. These include the following :• i) Self concept• ii) Cognitive structure• iii) Response salience• iv) Previous experiences
ATTRIBUTES OF THE SITUATION• Elements in the surrounding environment also influence perception process. Some of these are as follows :• i) Social context• ii) Organisational role• iii) Location of event
INTERPERSONAL PERCEPTION• In order to function effectively in a complex human society, we need to perceive the behaviour, current moods and traits of the persons around us. This is known as social perception . It is also called as interpersonal perception . It is concerned with how one individual perceives other individuals.•• Zalking and Castello has conducted research for better understanding of interpersonal perception.
INTERPERSONAL PERCEPTION….• The specific characteristics of the perceiver, according to them are :• 1. Knowing oneself makes it easier to see others accurately.• 2. One’s own characteristics affect the characteristics one is likely to see in others.• 3. People who accept themselves are more likely to be able to see favourable aspects of other people.• 4. Accuracy in perceiving others is not a single skill.
INTERPERSONAL PERCEPTION….• Similarly the characteristics of the person who is being perceived are:• 1. The status of the person perceived will greatly influence others’ perception of him.• 2. The person being perceived is usually placed into categories to simplify the viewer’s perceptual activities. Two common categories are status and role.• 3. The visible traits of the person perceived will greatly influence the perception of him.
• The above characteristics suggest that the organisational members must realise that their perceptions of others are greatly influenced by characteristics of themselves and characteristics of the other person.• Further is necessary to develop perceptual skills of oneself and others.
DEVELOPING PERCEPTUALSKILLS• Following attempts can be made to enhance perceptual skills.• 1. Perceiving oneself accurately: One should increase awareness about self. For this, he should obtain information on how others perceive us from as many sources as possible. By knowing. Perceiving and understanding ourselves accurately, we should remove blind spots about self.
DEVELOPING PERCEPTUALSKILLS….• 2. Being empathic : Empathy means being able to see a situation as it is experienced by others. A manager should be sensitive to the needs of others and perceive situations from their point of view as well.• 3. Having positive attitudes : A manger should see things from a positive angle, should be aware of personal biases ad should try to get rid of any negative feeling he may have of others. This will help to put things in proper perspective.
DEVELOPING PERCEPTUALSKILLS….• 4. Enhancing self – concept : Self-concept or a good self image is a function of how successfully we accomplish the things we attempt to do. When people perform roles where they exhibit their competence and get success, they develop a basic sense of self esteem and have positive self regard.• 5. Communication more openly : Managers should be able to effectively communicate to employees so that misconceptions can be dispelled.
DEVELOPING PERCEPTUALSKILLS….• 6. Avoiding common biases in perceptions : Managers should try to considerably minimise their perceptual biases. They should consciously raise their level of awareness in their interactions with situations.• 7. Avoiding attributions : Mangers should try to avoid making inappropriate attributions and should obtain as accurate as assessment of the situation as possible so that dysfunctional consequences can be avoided.
LEARNING• “ You cannot teach a man anything. You can only help him discover it within himself.” - Galileo• “ You cannot give fish to a man everyday. But if you teach how to fish, he will have fish everyday.”
MEANING / DEFINITIONS• Learning is the single most important concept in the study of human behaviour.• It is involved in almost everything we do. Every aspect of human behaviour is responsive to learning experiences – knowledge, skills, attitudes, language, value systems and personality traits.• So we see that everything can be learned through reasoning, thinking, information processing ad perception.
MEANING / DEFINITIONS…• “ Learning can be defined as relatively permanent change in behaviour the potentiality that results from reinforced practice or experience. - Steers & Porter.• “ Learning is any relatively permanent change in behaviour that occurs as a result of experience. - Stephen Robbins.• In simple words, learning is a change in behaviour acquired through experience.
MEANING / DEFINITIONS…• Learning can be defined as a “relatively permanent change in behaviour or potential behaviour as a result of direct or indirect experience”.• There are two primary elements in this definition that must both be present in order to identify the process of learning.
MEANING / DEFINITIONS….• First is the element that the change must be relatively permanent. This means that after “learning” our behaviour must be different, either better or worse as compared to our behaviour prior to this experience of learning.• The second aspect of the definition is that this change must occur due to some kind of experience or practice. This learning is not caused by biological maturation.
CHARACTERISTICS OF LEARNING• 1) Learning is an inferred process that is believed to influence behaviour.• 2) Learning results in a relatively permanent change in behaviour. Behaviour that is learnt, therefore, is relatively constant over time.• 3) Learning involves change, it may be good or bad.• 4) Learning comes from some form of experience. Experience may be acquired directly through practice or observation or through reading.
CHARACTERISTICS OFLEARNING…• 5) Learning is source of change in behaviour and performance.• 6) Learning is continuous process. It has the ability to respond adequately to a situation that may or may not have been encountered. It is not restricted to the schooldays but it is a lifelong process.• 7) Learning is the outcome of various related factors. The important factors that determine learning are motive, stimuli, response, reinforcement and retention.
THEORIES OF LEARNING• There are five general approaches to learning that are identified.• They are :–• i) Classical Conditioning Theory,• ii) Instrumental or Operant Conditioning Theory,• iii) Cognitive Learning Theory,• iv) Selective Learning Theory and• v) Social Learning theory.
i) Classical ConditioningTheory• Ivan Pavlov, a Russian physiologist owes credit for developing this theory. He conducted an experiment on dogs and developed a stimulus- response connection. This means that certain responses can be predicted which continuously result from certain induced stimuli. Classical conditioning introduces a simple cause-and-effect relationship between one stimulus and one response.
• It also makes the response reflexive or involuntary after the stimulus-response relationship has been established. This leaves no ground for making choices, which differentiates human beings from dogs. Under certain situations classical conditioning does explain human behaviour.
ii) Instrumental or Operant Conditioning Theory• Operant conditioning is concerned with learning that occurs as a consequence of behaviour. It focuses on the effects of reinforcements or rewards on desired behaviours. This learning is based on the simple fact that “the actions we perform often result in some consequences”.
• This theory was developed by Watson, a contemporary of Pavlov. He argued that behaviour was largely influenced by the rewards one received as result of actions. In other words, we now know that people change their behaviour by repeating acts that are rewarded and not repeating acts that the environment fails to reward.
iii) Cognitive Learning Theory• Learning is considered as the outcome of deliberate thinking about the problem or situation both intuitively and based upon known facts and responding in an objective and goal oriented manner. Cognition, in fact, is the act of knowing an item of information and this knowledge affects the behaviour of the person so that the information provides cognitive cues towards the expected goal.
iv) Selective Learning Theory• Selective learning theory is also cognitively based but it is more directly aimed at learning. In selective learning the person must not only associate stimulus and response and consequence experiences but must also determine which things to connect in the mind. Under this approach, a person chooses from a wide variety of possible leaning mechanisms.
• It involves a complex interaction among thinking, emotions, perception and motivation. Thus, there are many cognitions that come into play in selective learning. This theory is also named as “insightful learning and perceptual learning”. This is applied in relation to complicated learning tasks.
v) Social Learning theory• It is recognized that learning does not take place only because of environmental stimuli (classical and operant conditioning) or of individual determinism (cognitive approach) but is a blend of both views. It also emphasizes that people acquire new behaviour by observing or imitating others in a social setting. In addition learning can also be gained by discipline and self-control and an inner desire to acquire knowledge or skills irrespective of the external rewards or consequences. This process of self-control is also partially a reflection of societal and cultural influences on the development and growth of human beings.
PRINCIPLES OF LEARNING• There are many widely recognised principles of learning that can assist the manager attempting to influence behaviour. Some of these are principles are : – i) Reinforcements – ii) Punishments – iii) Avoidance Learning – iv) Extinction – v) Knowledge of results – vi) Schedules of Positive Reinforcement – vii) Acquisition - Learning curves – viii) Spontaneous Recovery
Reinforcements• Reinforcement plays a significant role in the learning theories. It is defined as any event that alters the probability of occurrence of a response. It is anything that both increases the strength of responses and tends to induce repetitions of the behaviour that preceded the reinforcement. It is the process by which stimuli strengthen behaviour.
Punishments• Punishment is defined presenting an uncomfortable consequence for a particular behavioural response. It is used to decrease the frequency of undesired behaviour. The difference between punishment and negative reinforcement is that in the former case, a noxious consequence is applied to decrease the frequency of undesired behaviour, whereas in the latter, a noxious consequence is withheld when a desired behaviour is exhibited.
Avoidance Learning• Avoidance learning is the seeking to avoid an unpleasant condition or outcome by following a desired behaviour. In other words, when behaviour can prevent an uncomfortable stimulus it is called avoidance behaviour. For example, if an employee correctly performs a task so that the supervisor may avoid harassing the employee. Similarly, in order to avoid he discomfort the employee may achieve the group sanctioned level of production.
Extinction• Extinction is non-reinforcement that leads to an ‘extinction’ of undesired behaviour. When the positive reinforcement for a learned response is withheld, the undesired behaviour decreases and will eventually disappear. Thus, the decline in response rate as a result of a lack of positive reinforcement is called extinction.• For example, if an employee is consistently late, the supervisor may withhold praise. Thus , the employee may realise that being late is not leading to desired outcomes and may try to be
Knowledge of results• Human behaviour is always a goal-directed behaviour. Knowing goals and their results leads to learning and behaviour modification. Employees who have no idea o whether they are doing an acceptable job have little chance to improve their performances. The knowledge of correct behaviour is reinforcing and strengthens the preceding behaviour.• Edwin Locke found in his research studies that feedback affects performance only to the extent to which employees set higher performance goals in response to such feedback. Thus, goals can be achieved when employees are provided with accurate feedback on performance.
Schedules of PositiveReinforcement• There are number of ways in which reinforcements can be scheduled. A continuous schedule is one in which reinforcement occurs after every acceptable behaviour. But this is not feasible.• Bass and Vaughn have concluded that “learning is more permanent when correct behaviour is rewarded only part of the time”.• Fester and Skinner have presented four types of reinforcements schedules for operant learning situations.
Acquisition - Learning curves• These curves apply mainly to classical conditioning. This principle shows that there is a gradually increasing strength of response for each repeated trial. Psychologist have shown the practical significance of these curves to the learning in the following ways :• a) The more unfamiliar the task to be learned, the more likely it is that progress will be slow at the start and will then increase.
• b) In most learning of complicated skills, there is at least one period, short or long. In which each new trial produces an improvement o equal size.• c) As we approach the ultimate limit of learning, progress slows down and it takes many trials to produce even a small amount of improvement..
Spontaneous Recovery• Again this principle is related to classical conditioning concept. This indicates that if people experience a sequence of non reinforced conditioned responses and then take a rest, immediately thereafter they will return to a more intense level of conditioned response even though no reinforcement has taken place. This jump in response strength following rest is known as the notion of spontaneous recovery. This principle explains that the conditioned response does not completely disappear during extinction, but remains suppressed .
LEARNING PRINCIPLES• i) All human beings can learn.• ii) An individual must be motivated to learn.• iii) Learning is active but not passive.• iv) Learners acquire knowledge more rapidly with guidance.• v) Time must be provided to practice learning.• vi) Learning methods should be varied.• vii) Standards of performance should be set for the learners.
LEARNING PRINCIPLES…• viii) Different levels of learning exist.• ix) Learning is a cumulative process.• x) Learning is closely related to attention and concentration.• xi) Trainees learn better when they learn at their own place.• xii) Make the learning meaningful by using familiar examples and summaries.• xiii) When the learner has made the correct responses to the learning process, he has learned.- G.S.Sudha.
DETERMINANTS OF LEARNING• The important factors that determine learning are:• i) Motive or drive• ii) Stimuli :- a) Generalisation• b) Discrimination• iii) Responses• iv) Reinforcements• v) Retention.
Motive or drive• Motives refer to certain goals that the individual attempts to achieve. They are primary energisers of behaviour. Motives prompt people to action. They are largely subjective and represent the mental feelings of human beings. They are the ways o behaviour and main springs of action. Motive arises continuously and determines the general direction of an individual’s behaviour.
Stimuli• Stimuli exists in the environment in which a person lives. Stimuli increase the probability of extracting a specific response from a person. Stimuli may be two types :• a) Generalisation• b) Discrimination.
• GENERALISATION takes place when the similar stimulus repeats in the environment. When two stimuli are exactly the same, they will have the probability to extract a specific response.• DISCRIMINATION has wide applications in organisational behaviour in view of individuals differences. In discrimination, responses of the individuals vary according to different stimuli.• For example. A supervisor may respond to a high producing worker in a positive manner, but in a different manner to one producing very less.
Responses• The stimulus generates response. The response may be in the physical form or in terms of attitudes or perception. However, the responses need to be operationally defined and preferably physically observable.• The response of the individuals is termed as ‘ behaviour ‘. The response may be either positive or negative.
Reinforcements• Reinforcement is a primary condition of learning. Reinforcement is, anything that increases the strength of response and tends to induce repetitions of the behaviour that precede the reinforcement. Without reinforcement no quantifiable alteration of behaviour will take place. Reinforcement helps in the repetition of any behaviour.• For example. If an employee is rewarded for his hard work, he repeats his behaviour, i.e. he works harder to get the reward again.
Retention• The learned behaviour should be retrieved according to the needs. Retention means remembrance of learned behaviour over time.• Learning which is forgotten over time is called ‘extinction’.• When response behaviour returns without any intervening reinforcement, it is called “spontaneous recovery”.