The Role of Social Comparison For Maximizers and Satisficers: Wanting the Best Or Wanting to Be the Best

Kimberlee Weaver, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, USA
Norbert Schwarz, University of Michigan, USA
Keenan Cottone, University of Michigan, USA
Kimberly Daniloski, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, USA
Past work shows that maximizers, people who examine every possibility before determining the optimal choice, are more affected by social comparison information than satisficers. We examine whether this is because others provide information about the best option or because maximizers want to be the best in a social rivalry. Results from three studies examining preferences for absolute versus positional choices in private or public situations support the social rivalry explanation. Relative to satisficers, maximizers prefer higher absolute choices and lower positional standing only in private. In public, a greater percentage of maximizers prefer higher positional standing but lower objective quality than satisficers.
[ to cite ]:
Kimberlee Weaver, Norbert Schwarz, Keenan Cottone, and Kimberly Daniloski (2009) ,"The Role of Social Comparison For Maximizers and Satisficers: Wanting the Best Or Wanting to Be the Best", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 36, eds. Ann L. McGill and Sharon Shavitt, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 760-760.