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Behavioral Prediction & Consistency

Behavior of people cannot be predicted with 100 % precision.

What causes people to behave differently in similar situations?
To what degree can we predict their behavior? Give an example of a situation in which the prediction is simple and one in which it is difficult or impossible.
Can Organizational Behavior help us to increase the probability of some predictions? Why do you think so?

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RESPONSE:

1. What causes people to behave differently in similar situations?

Individual differences, mood, thoughts, attitude, current situations, amount of sleep a person gets, substance abuse of use the night before, etc. cause people to behave differently in similar situations. For example, whereas a person might be hard working and reliable at work one day; the recent stressors (e.g. death of a parent, sick child who kept the employee up all night, etc.) might resulted in poor performance from the same employee in the same work situation.

2. To what degree can we predict their behavior? Give an example of a situation in which the prediction is simple and one in which it is difficult or impossible.

The more we understand about behavior and individual patterns of behaving in certain situations, the more likely we can predict behavior with some degree of accuracy. For example, if we pay an employee to come to work, and fire her is she does not not, it is fairly easy to predict that the person will come to work most of the time.

Other behavior that is more abstract, like coming up with innovated ideas for a future project, or how creative a person will be in a certain situation. Although these concepts are fairly stable e.g. a person who measure high in creativity, is likely to continue to be creative, there are things that block creativity that are difficult to predict. Also market predictions are also sometimes hard to predict, but methods are learned in OB, whch make it more predictable (see except at the end of this response).

3. Can Organizational Behavior help us to increase the probability of some predictions? Why do you think so?

Learning about organization behavior, risk factors, mitigation strategies and theories of motivation greatly increase the probability of some predictions. In fact, to control risk, to address its risk, many organizations have centralized the process to better track risk probability and coordinate mitigation strategies. Others have invested large amounts of money in data analytics and business intelligence software. However, it is somewhat different when involving company personnel, strategies, which rarely extend much further than training programs or employee handbooks. In OB, however, training is often based on tested organizational theories and strategies of organizational behavior e.g., motivation, market predictions, leadership, etc. What has worked and been ...

Solution Summary

By responding to the questions, this solution examines the predictability and consistency of human behavior and the impact of organizational behavior on predictability.

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