Wednesday, December 07, 2011
The Wall Street Journal reported recently on a new study by Professors Aner Sela and Jonah Berger about what they describe as decision quicksand. These scholars compared the approach individuals took on three types of decisions: hard, important choices; hard, unimportant choices; and easy choices. The scholars found that individuals spent the most time on the difficult, but unimportant decisions! Moreover, happiness declined as the length of the decision-making process increased. it reminds me of what a former dean once said to me: "Academics find a way to argue the most over the decisions that matter the least!" Well, it appears that trivial choices trip up many people, not just hopeless professors.