Friday, January 15, 2016

Bounded rationality

Our ability to make rational decisions is actually limited by the information we have, the limitations of our mind, and the time constraints that surround the decision we are making.

Behavioral economists refer to this as bounded rationality -- a term attributed to Herbert A. Simon, a leading economist, political scientist and thinker of his time.

Whether small decisions or large ones, we are limited in our decision making though we tend to see ourselves as rational thinkers. Even when it comes to the education of our children, clearly one of the most critical decisions we will make each year, bounded rationality plays an integral role.

As virtual schools we have the potential to use this in order to manipulate families into making decisions that are best for our school. We also have the potential to help them make as rational of a decision as possible through the information we give them, the way in which we share it, and our willingness to put their interests first.

When we fail to do the latter it more often has to do with our fears of enrollment numbers than anything else. But, what if the reverse were true? What if, by being authentic we actually could better our enrollments, and increase our numbers? It's happening now.

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