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Kenan Institute 2023 Grand Challenge: Workforce Disrupted
Market-Based Solutions to Vital Economic Issues
Mar 1, 2013

Accurate By Way of Aggregation: Should You Trust Your Intuition-Based First Impressions?


How much should you trust your intuition about other people’s job performance? Different literatures provide different answers to this question. Social psychological research on “thin slices” suggests that untrained observers can predict a person’s job performance based on a few moments of observation. Industrial/organizational psychologists have found a weaker relationship between job performance and the intuitive judgments that people make following employment interviews. This paper argues that interviewers’ intuitive judgments appear to be weaker predictors than intuitive judgments of thin slices because thin slices research measures predictive validity at the aggregate-level of analysis. Intuition-based first impressions will not usually be valid predictors of job performance unless people have an opportunity to collect and combine the judgments of multiple independent raters.

Note: Research papers posted on ResearchGate, including any findings, may differ from the final version chosen for publication in academic journals.

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