Confirmation Bias – Part 3

by | Oct 2, 2019

by Ben Hess, Managing Director, ThirdPool Recruiting

Confirmation bias is the tendency to search for, interpret, favor, and recall information in a way that affirms one’s prior beliefs or hypotheses.

We’ve discussed leveraging this human tendency to recruit more successfully over the last couple of days (Part 1, 2), but it can also be used to improve retention.

According to Seth Godin’s essay, there are two more components to confirmation bias worth noting.


When we engage in a physical transaction with someone else, we increase the self-talk that leads to [confirmation bias]….

The ritual creates a receptive person susceptible to the influences of authoritative culturally sanctioned powers.

When agents come into an office, interact with the same people, and develop a routine, they put themselves in a state where they’re more likely to do what the organization wants them to do (i.e. I want you to remain part of our team).

The ritual creates the person’s state, and the state is what creates the affect.


Fear underlies just about everything we do. It keeps us from starting, helps us finish and can transform our experience of almost anything.

Fearful feelings can keep an agent’s desire to change from taking root.

It confirms the belief that the world is a scary place and staying right here is the safest option.

Providing rituals and a safe place contributes to the confirmation bias that will keep your agents from leaving.

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