Self-Determination and the Relinquishment of Decision Control: Why Are Consumers Reluctant to Delegate Their Decisions to Surrogates?

Murat Usta, University of Alberta, Canada
Gerald Haubl, University of Alberta, Canada
This paper demonstrates consumers’ striking reluctance to relinquish the control of their decisions to expert surrogates even when it is beneficial for them to do so. In three experiments involving consequential investment decisions, we show that the preference for making decisions independently is driven by the motivation to maintain an internal perceived locus of causality (PLOC) for one’s decisions. Consumers with an inclination to experience an internal PLOC for their behaviors are reluctant to delegate their decisions to expert surrogates. Consumers with an inclination to experience an external PLOC for their behaviors do not demonstrate this reluctance.
[ to cite ]:
Murat Usta and Gerald Haubl (2008) ,"Self-Determination and the Relinquishment of Decision Control: Why Are Consumers Reluctant to Delegate Their Decisions to Surrogates?", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 35, eds. Angela Y. Lee and Dilip Soman, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 249-252.