When making judgments, people with social power rely on gut feelings

Washington: As per a recent research, powerful people are strongly influenced by internal body cues stemming from their motor system when making judgments about preferences of paintings, objects, movements or letter sequences.

The Royal Holloway, University of London and at University of London College research looked at how the easiness of high power individuals’ motor actions impacted their judgments. The findings are based on four experiments in which almost 400 people participated.

Karl-Andrew Woltin from the Department of Psychology at Royal Holloway, who led these studies, said that there is more and more evidence that the powerful more strongly rely on internal cues when making judgments, adding that the research shows this for motor cues and preference judgments, but other research has also found the powerful to more strongly rely on other internal cues.

Woltin added that for example, feelings of hunger predicts the amount of food eaten by powerful but not by powerless individuals and feelings of easiness or difficulty associated with memory impacts judgments of powerful but not powerless individuals.

He noted that together with these findings, the research suggests that the powerful more strongly rely on gut feelings and internal cues when they make judgments about what they like, what is true, and what they should do. Sometimes it is good to be in touch with your feelings. But sometimes this can lead people astray and result in suboptimal judgments.

The researchers, who ran these studies, argue that this bias of power holders has more far-reaching consequences than previously considered.

Woltin concluded that the findings suggest that mechanisms need to be put into place that make sure power holders do not favour internal cues over other information available to them when they make important decisions.

The study is published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: General. (ANI)