Thursday, October 21, 2010
To: Mr. Supervisor
From: Associate Director &The Department Hiring Personnel
Date: July 31, 2010
Re: Biases and Judgment in the Hiring Process
Recently, a new case manager for the radiology department in the hospital was hired. In order to maintain the good name of the hospital, our honored organization, and for it to stand for its very highly valued services and unequalled reputation, it is only inherent that we evaluate our practices. In this regard, yours truly is making a self-evaluation process as to the dignity and reasonability on the decision to hire Mr. Smith as a case manager over the rest of the eight final candidates.
Deciding as to which one to choose among the many outstanding candidates was a difficult ordeal. Aside from this obvious task on selecting which, among the original seventeen (17) applicants, and narrowing them into eight (8) final candidates, is the best and the most suitable case-manager-to-be, there are other issues at hand that need to be addressed given my position. The two most dominant of these issues that yours truly needed to strongly consider are biases and egocentrism. Although Barton (2001) noted that "everyone has biases”, it is not an excuse not to minimize it or be aware of it and prevent it from happening. On the other hand, egocentrism happens when one “can only view the world from their perspective and finds it difficult to understand any other". (Oakley 18) Biases and egocentrism are so inherent that they need to be warded off every time a major decision, such as hiring a key organization manager, is to be made.
Combating one’s bias is not simple but as long as there is patience, it can at least be reduced to its minimum level. In the case of yours truly, the following major measures are applied in order to succeed in eliminating or at least minimizing bias:
a. Identifying the issue at hand and getting informed as much as possible,
b. Not adhering to stereotyping and discrimination (age, gender, sexual orientation, physical appearance, ethnic origin, etcetera; and
c. Applying the “scientific method”
Once a person has enough knowledge about something, he or she is not easy to be deceived, especially by his or her own biases. Stereotyping and discrimination is so strong in this society, thus, yours truly always make a checklist in avoiding all these types of biases or causes of biases. The “Scientific Method” always works in reducing or eliminating bias. This means that yours truly always see to it to ccollect useful data by means of observing and experimenting, then formulate and test hypothesis. Even though this may sound so technical but it can be applied on almost every situation.
As for egocentrism, almost the same procedures are applied in order to eliminate it during a decision-making process. Moreover, one simple rule applies here as well: the Golden Rule while stepping into someone’s shoes. For situations where yours truly believe that egocentrism may takeover, the idea comes to mind carrying the solution. This solution is in the form of inner examining voice asking, “If I am in his or her situation, how would I like to be treated?” Thus, it is a mixed golden rule and empathy. The answer to the question always reduces/eliminates egocentricity.
Decisions by expedience are considered as foundations of this organization. Decisions based on reflections give this organization its emotion and meaning. Thus, yours truly also utilize both, around 80% of decisions are expedience-based and the rest are based upon reflection. It is always important though, during the entire decision-making process to "ensure that subjective decisions about omitting some subjects from the analysis do not cause bias" (Peat, 2001, p. 200)
Decision-making is difficult and determination is important in succeeding. There are also factors deterring a person to perfect his/her decision-making abilities but once these factors are identified and admitted by the decision-maker, there are various ways to combat them.