According to a report in the Journal of Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes by researchers from Boston College, George Mason University and Rice University: Intuition may be just as effective in decision-making as an analytical approach. And sometimes more efficient and effective, depending on the decision-maker’s level of expertise on the subject at hand.
“What we found demystifies a lot of the information out there that says intuition isn’t as effective as if you sat down and walked through an analytical approach.”
Testing intuition against analysis, the study found that people can trust their gut and rely on intuition when making a broad evaluation in an area where they have in-depth knowledge of the subject. As people move up in organizations, they’re often required to make judgments that may not be readily solved by rational analysis.
Intuition has long been viewed as a less effective approach to critical reasoning when compared to the merits of analytical thinking. Yet as society and businesses place a greater emphasis on the speed and effectiveness of decision-making, the intuitive approach has been identified as an increasingly important tool.
Analytic decisions are great for breaking things down into smaller parts, which is necessary for a math problem. But intuition is about looking at patterns and wholes.