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04/10/2018

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As many of us are now (becoming) aware, the "stickiness" of this 10 percent threshold with people has a foundation in neuroscience research - which was specifically addressed in a segment of our referenced WorldatWork conference presentation (http://www.compensationcafe.com/2017/05/the-next-big-idea-begins-here.html) last year.

I am more than a little surprised by the apparent "lengths" that people are willing to go obtain that 10 percent increase, but I'll assume that there's a strong likelihood of the confluence of neuroscience research and at least a hint of the human irrationality typically associated with applied behavioral economics, that's also in play here. Interesting.

Thanks Chris,

I appreciate the additional science. Like many "surveys", I suspect, if given a real opportunity" all the people who supported an answer would not act on that support.

The issue is troubling. Less from a political perspective than from the seeming desperation by people to get a raise that will change little about their lives.

There's definitely something magical about 10 percent - and its clear relationship to those Just Noticeable Differences (JND) associated with the 10-12 percent of difference threshold for the five human senses.

Several years ago during an internal training initiative, we challenged groups of attendees to finish the statement: "I wouldn't dream of changing jobs for anything less than a ______ percent pay increase." In more than a handful of sessions, as many as 19 out of 20 attendees answered with a common response. You guessed it: 10 percent. Although none of the attendees could adequately explain the "why" for their answer.

I'm not that surprised that so many people chose to give up their right to vote for a 10% increase.

I think that many people don't really value their right to vote, so it's an "easy" thing to give up. Think about it - if we have 50% turnout in a non-presidential election, that's huge. The average turnout for mid-term elections is about 40%. Even presidential elections don't generally get turnout much beyond 50% - in 2016, it was 58%.

What's the cause of the apathy? A couple of things spring to mind. I think most people who don't vote believe their vote doesn't make a difference in the outcome. Another issue is a lot of people think most politicians are the same, so who is sitting in the chair makes little difference. There's ample anecdotal evidence to support both.

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