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Error orientation in a decision-making simulation program: differences between promotion vs. prevention focus

Abstract: Changing situations develop work environments where workers must generate strategies to learn and persist from continuous errors and setbacks. Previous research has shown that errors enhance motivation, break the routine, lead to creative solutions, and reduce frustration; however, this positive aspect seems to have a stronger presence if personal factors and contextual background support such a focus. The main aim of this paper was to analyse, with an experimental design, how different frames about errors and negative feedback (error promotion versus error prevention) affected performance and decision-making processes in a complex simulation task, taking into account individual attitude towards errors. The sample included 40 employees of a Spanish transportation company (37.5% were women and 62.5% were men). Firstly, participants answered a questionnaire about their individual Error Orientation. Then, they were randomly assigned to an experimental condition to carry out a complex decision-making task through a multimedia simulator, which aimed to expose the participant to factors that influence the dynamics of innovation and change, elements that are present in all modern organizations. None of the participants had previous experience in the task. Performance was measured through different aspects: (1) final performance values: adopters, points, time to make decisions and time after receiving negative feedback; (2) the decision-making process. Results showed that error orientation is related to final performance, especially error risk taking and error communication. The effect of the experimental condition was higher for the time to make decisions after receiving negative feedback and for the time to complete the simulation program. Those who worked under the error prevention condition took significantly longer to perform the task. Although our results show non-consistent effects, which frame than the other (promotion versus prevention) is better to make decisions is discussed. A promotion frame prioritizes flexibility, openness, and rapid progress, but does so by sacrificing certainty, and careful analysis. The most crucial factor may be which one best fits the demands of the task at hand.

 Autoría: Arenas A., Briones E., Tabernero C.,

 Fuente: Frontiers in Psychology, 2023, 14, 1057634

Editorial: Frontiers Media

 Fecha de publicación: 24/08/2023

Nº de páginas: 12

Tipo de publicación: Artículo de Revista

 DOI: 10.3389/fpsyg.2023.1057634

ISSN: 1664-1078