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When two individuals look at the same thing and they each see something differently, it is perception. Perception is defined as "A process by which individuals organize and interpret their sensory impressions in order to give meaning to their environment". (Robbins 2005) Perception is important because a person's behavior is based on their perception of what reality is, not on reality itself.

Three factors that influence perception are the perceiver, the situation, and the target. A person's attitude, motive, interests, experience, and expectations are the characteristics of the individual perceiver. Time, work setting, and social setting affect the situations. The targets relationship to what is around them affects perception. The novelty, motion, sound, size, background, proximity, and similarity are all types of targets.

The Attribution theory suggests that when we observe an individuals behavior we attempt to determine whether it was caused by internal or external situations. Internally caused behaviors are those that are under the control of the individual. Externally caused behaviors are those that are out of control of the individual. If an individual is always late for work and it is known that they are not happy with their current job this would be an internally caused behavior. A solution would also have to be looked into as to see why this individual is unhappy with their job. If a few employees were late on the same day due to traffic problem on the way to work this would be an external caused behavior because the traffic problem was out of their control.

Managers and employees are always judging each other in the work place. Managers must evaluate their employee's performance and employees are always looking at their coworkers to see how much effort they are putting compared to them.

Perception is also used in an employment interview where interviewers generally draw an impression of the applicant early in the interview. Often the first applicant to be interviewed is often what the interviewer judges the applicants that follow. They are judging if the applicants are better or worse than the first.

The self-fulfilling prophecy is used in performance expectations, that is, what is expected of an employee is what managers usually judge others on. If the manager expects a high performance, then the employees will perform to the expectations of the manager. In addition, if low expectations are expected the employees will only perform at the lowest level expected of them. Profiling in corporations need to be addressed because profiling creates distrust and conflict, undermines motivation and reduces job satisfaction in minorities. Organizations need to make managers and employees aware of the damages that profiling can do. Diversity training programs are used to address stereotyping and profiling of minorities.

There are three different criteria in making ethical choices. The utilitarian criterion is a view that dominates the business decision making. Goals of efficiency, productivity and high profits fall into this category. The second criterion is focusing on rights which emphasizes respecting and protecting the basic rights of individuals.



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