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Chapter 16. Strategic Thinking Part Two > Key Idea #10: Humans Are Naturally So...

Key Idea #10: Humans Are Naturally Sociocentric Animals

Not only are humans naturally egocentric but we are also easily drawn into sociocentric thinking and behavior. Groups offer us security to the extent that we internalize and unthinkingly conform to their rules, imperatives, and taboos. Growing up, we learn to conform to many groups. Peer groups especially tend to dominate our life. Our unconscious acceptance of the values of the group leads to the unconscious standard: “It's true if we believe it.” There seems to be no belief so absurd but that some group of humans irrationally accepts it as rational.

Not only do we accept the belief systems of the groups to which we belong, but also most important, we act on those belief systems. For example, many groups are anti-intellectual in nature. Groups may expect its members to adhere to any number of dysfunctional behaviors. For example, some youth groups expect members to abuse outsiders verbally and physically (as proof of power or courage). And some groups who share lunch together during the workweek engage in malicious gossip about others in the same work place.


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