Tuesday, May 22, 2012

What do I feel about you? - Perception and its Nature

In the last blog, we discussed about MBTI and the 16 preferences. In today's blog, we look at the concept of perception and introduce ourselves to social perception.

The term Perception in common parlance derives itself from the word - "perceive". The term perceive means - to recognize, discern, envision, or understand. In the context of our discussion on Organizational Behavior, the term is used a bit differently.

Perception involves the way we look at the world around us - it is the one that adds meaning to what we gather through the five sense - touch, smell, hearing, vision and taste. It is the vehicle through which we understand ourselves and our surrounding. What is of peculiar interest in the context of our discussion is a particular type called - "Social Perception".

Social Perception is the process of interpreting the information about other people. Almost all of management activities deal with perception - be it appraisal of an individuals performance or interview - it is based on how the current situation is perceived, what my individual opinions are about you (the subject of discussion or observation) and what the subject has actually done.Stated differently, we have the following factors that affect our perception:
  • characteristics of ourselves as perceiver
  • characteristics of the target of perception
  • characteristics of the situation in which the interaction takes place

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