Too Much Fit? How Regulatory Fit Can Turn Us Into Buridan’S Asses

Jonathan Levav, Columbia University
Ran Kivetz, Columbia University
Cecile Cho, Columbia University
People derive value from fulfilling their goals through means that fit their motivational or regulatory orientation. Such “value from fit” is typically found in studies that pair a regulatory orientation with a single means to achieve the goal. But what happens when there are multiple means to achieve the same goal? In this paper we investigate the consequences of such “too much fit” on people’s choices among multi-attribute stimuli. We show that too much fit arouses acute decision conflict, and evokes decision processes that result in a pronounced tendency to make counter- normative choices. We test our hypotheses using the attraction, compromise, and deferral paradigms.
[ to cite ]:
Jonathan Levav, Ran Kivetz, and Cecile Cho (2008) ,"Too Much Fit? How Regulatory Fit Can Turn Us Into Buridan’S Asses", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 35, eds. Angela Y. Lee and Dilip Soman, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 122-124.