Improving Group Judgment Accuracy: Information Sharing and Determining the Best Member

Improving Group Judgment Accuracy: Information Sharing and Determining the Best Member Most approaches to improving the quality of group decisions have focused on structuring the group interaction so as to minimize the negative features present in freely interacting groups. The recent finding that groups often can perform at least as well as their best member on judgment tasks suggests the possibility that group effectiveness could be improved by building on the positive features of group interaction rather than by restricting it. In the present study interacting groups were encouraged to discuss each item of a quantitative judgment task before determining what their group′s estimate would be. Two different instructional interventions were implemented and contrasted to a control condition. Both interventions consisted of giving common sense advice about what the groups should do as they discussed each item. Findings indicate that simply telling groups to either: (a) share task-relevant information, or (b) try to determine the most accurate member led to significantly better group performance. These results suggest two distinct ways in which groups can be as accurate as their best member, even when performing tasks with undemonstrable solutions. Implications of these two approaches for improving group accuracy are discussed. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes Elsevier

Improving Group Judgment Accuracy: Information Sharing and Determining the Best Member

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Publisher
Elsevier
Copyright
Copyright © 1995 Academic Press
ISSN
0749-5978
DOI
10.1006/obhd.1995.1042
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Most approaches to improving the quality of group decisions have focused on structuring the group interaction so as to minimize the negative features present in freely interacting groups. The recent finding that groups often can perform at least as well as their best member on judgment tasks suggests the possibility that group effectiveness could be improved by building on the positive features of group interaction rather than by restricting it. In the present study interacting groups were encouraged to discuss each item of a quantitative judgment task before determining what their group′s estimate would be. Two different instructional interventions were implemented and contrasted to a control condition. Both interventions consisted of giving common sense advice about what the groups should do as they discussed each item. Findings indicate that simply telling groups to either: (a) share task-relevant information, or (b) try to determine the most accurate member led to significantly better group performance. These results suggest two distinct ways in which groups can be as accurate as their best member, even when performing tasks with undemonstrable solutions. Implications of these two approaches for improving group accuracy are discussed.

Journal

Organizational Behavior and Human Decision ProcessesElsevier

Published: May 1, 1995

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