Newswise: Expertise as a Liability? Experts May Overcompensate Decisions When Told They Are Wrong

08 Jun 2022
The soundness and reliability of an authority’s decision-making can be affected by negative feedback, a Rutgers study finds.

Originally found at Newswise

Financial strategists, medical advisers and venture capitalists that are considered experts in their fields play a crucial role in major organizations, but are more likely than novices to make overconfident predictions after being told they are wrong, according to a Rutgers study.

Published in the Academy of Management Journal, the study examined whether expertise could become a liability in adjusting to adverse outcomes.

Analyses of six studies – including data from chief financial officer predictions of stock market returns and calls by Major League Baseball umpires – show that negative feedback about mistakes can result in experts doubling down with over precise predictions and assessments.

“We typically think an expert has the skills and confidence to perform despite adverse conditions,” said Jerry Kim, coauthor of the study and an assistant professor at Rutgers Business School. “But the reality is that confidence is built upon a foundation that can be threatened. Particularly in a time of constant feedback, every expert is subject to extreme scrutiny.”

Continue reading the original article at Newswise

Read the original research in Academy of Management Journal and Proceedings.

Read the Academy of Management Insights summary.

Learn more about the AOM Scholars and explore their work: