Executives’ Perceptual Filters: What They Notice and How They Make Sense

Donald Hambrick (ed.). The Executive Effect: Concepts and Methods for Studying Top Managers. Greenwich. CT: JAI Press, 1988, pp. 35-65

25 Pages Posted: 26 Dec 2015

See all articles by William H. Starbuck

William H. Starbuck

University of Oregon - Charles H. Lundquist School of Business; New York University (NYU) - Department of Management and Organizational Behavior

Frances J. Milliken

New York University (NYU) - Department of Management and Organizational Behavior

Date Written: 1988

Abstract

Retrospective explanations of past events encourage academics to overstate the contributions of executives and the benefits of accurate perceptions or careful analyses. Because retrospective analyses oversimplify the connections between behaviors and outcomes, prescriptions derived from retrospective understanding may not help executives who are living amid current events. The paper describes some influences on the perceptual filtering processes that executives use as they observe and try to understand their environments.

Keywords: executives, perception, sensemaking, noticing

Suggested Citation

Starbuck, William H. and Milliken, Frances J., Executives’ Perceptual Filters: What They Notice and How They Make Sense (1988). Donald Hambrick (ed.). The Executive Effect: Concepts and Methods for Studying Top Managers. Greenwich. CT: JAI Press, 1988, pp. 35-65, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2708156

William H. Starbuck (Contact Author)

University of Oregon - Charles H. Lundquist School of Business ( email )

1208 University of Oregon
Eugene, OR 97403-1208
United States

New York University (NYU) - Department of Management and Organizational Behavior ( email )

44 West 4th Street
New York, NY 10012
United States

Frances J. Milliken

New York University (NYU) - Department of Management and Organizational Behavior ( email )

44 West 4th Street
New York, NY 10012
United States

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