188 Cognitive Biases

Cognitive Bias Codex

When I saw this brilliant graphic on Cognitive Biases from Design Hacks the other day, all I could think was “Wow! We do truly have so many biases.”

Over the last few days, I’ve written around the exploration of bias and one or two ideas of how we can activate tools to shift this.

Today I am happy to share this graphic, and also what I feel is the most powerful part of what they have done here.

The simple power in this infographic is to shift our “wow!” at the fact that there are so many biases, then to contextualise them in simple terms.

I’ve saved you the trouble of counting them, there are 188 different cognitive biases shown. I also love the way they have contextualised these into four themes, with a total of twenty sub-themes, under which sit these 188 different cognitive biases.

The four themes on the infographic are each around an area of cognitive biases:

  1. What should we remember?
  2. Too much information
  3. We need to act fast
  4. Not enough meaning

A simple summary of 188 cognitive biases.

Sometimes we make things too complicated. If you’d like more information on biases as well as the mental shortcuts we create using those biases, see the long read I wrote on “You cannot eliminate your biases“, which lists 10 areas of bias (put in terms Psychologists use), as well as links to five books, talks, papers that I found valuable in my own learning.

For today, though, the power of the infographic is in both illustrating and simplifying from 188 down to 20 then to 4

The learning for leaders in that (which we learn again and again, over and over), is the power of context.


Also published on Medium.

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