Making a decision – bystander
– 50 ideas you really need to know psychology, Adrian Furnham
It may sound easy when make decision from bystander point of view without thinking much details, and taking action. Research has led to the development of the five step decision models of bystander intervention. It asserts that people must go through five steps before they offer help or walk away.
- People must obviously notice the event. People who are in a hurry, talking on their mobile phone or otherwise distracted might simply not notice an emergency.
- People must interpret the scene as an emergency where help is required. Many emergencies are confusing. People look to those around them for clues. If others seem unconcerned, people are unlikely to respond. This was discussed in my other article “Why follow others?” Situational ambiguity leads to misinterpretation and apathy.
- People must assume some sort of responsibility. People have to decide that it is their responsibility, not others’, to help. The issue rests on their shoulder alone.
- People must feel they know how to help. People don’t offer help for lots of reasons associated with self-perceived competence. Perceived ignorance about mechanical issues means people may not help a stranded motorist.
- People must decide to help. People don’t assist others for various reasons. They may be embarrassed by memories of volunteering to help and being rebuffed because of a misinterpretation of the situation. In litigious societies, they may be worried about legal implications of helping in certain situations (young children, torn clothes) or simply that the cost to themselves (in terms of time, possible money) is too high. (Furuham, 2012)
It is not simply action that people must talk to themselves a few arounds before they offer help or walk away. We make all sort of decision in various of situation. The decision affected by external environment related to who, what, when and where; as well as internal factors, such as personal memories experiences. This short article has only talked about one of millions of decision people need to make in everyday life – OFFER HELP or WALK AWAY.