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What is Cognitive Style
Cognitive style is a term that refers to a way of perceiving, thinking, decision making and problem solving. Each person obviously thinks a little differently, but usually has a characteristic style of thinking.

Cognitive style is a term that refers to a way of perception, thinking, decision making and problem solving. Each person obviously thinks a little differently, but usually has a characteristic style of thinking.

It is important why a given individual or group holds such style, how they think. Could it be by environment, culture or climate? The topic of cognitive style has appeared, albeit under different names, in the evaluation of an individual in personality psychology long ago. However it gains unique position when it is applied specifically to the theory of decision making and problem solving and its context in the working process.

In practice of human resources management and development it is necessary to answer the questions:

  • What cognitive style does the individual use?
  • What cognitive styles does the group use?
  • What cognitive styles do dominate in the organization?
  • Why are given cognitive styles applied?
  • If given cognitive style is effective, how to ensure its dissemination to other workers?
  • If it is conversely inefficient, how can it remove?
  • How can we ensure that, for example, newly arrived workers don’t create or acquire this inefficient cognitive style?

Practical steps:

  • First, it is necessary during normal business practice to observe and describe actually used cognitive styles
  • Then it is necessary to assess their accuracy and efficiency. Where do critical errors in thinking happen?
  • Why do such thinking styles apply?
  • If the styles are inappropriate, is it possible to change them?
  • How to systematically teach workers to think differently and better?

Related terms and methods:

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Last update: 23.06.2016

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