CAJ 041-Lisa Cooney-Cognitive Bias

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Did you know that your brain makes up stories all day long, and if they are good stories, you believe them? Come to this entertaining interactive session to experience some “cognitive illusions” for yourself, and learn what they demonstrate about how our brains’ work. During this session, open to all levels, you will watch videos to learn about specific cognitive biases, and then learn what to do about them. For example, confirmation bias leads us to perceive evidence that confirms our existing beliefs while disregarding evidence that contradicts them. Knowing this, we can begin to be more discerning when trying to answer the question, "What happened?"
Cognitive science and behavioral psychology offer important insights for agilists, insights that can help us work more effectively with our co-workers and clients. You will learn how awareness of our brains’ tendencies is a powerful tool to overcome our own innate cognitive bias, and the cognitive bias of others. This newfound awareness can open you to more varied perspectives in order to tell yourself a story that is both richer and more nuanced – and closer to being “a true story.” You will not only be more capable of sharing your perspectives, but also more open to the perspectives of others people, leading to more successful interactions and outcomes.


Lisa Cooney is the principal agile coach at Axios, where she supports the product and tech teams. Her interests include cognitive bias and how to deal with it, business agility, women in agile, and agile leadership. She has a background in education and training with deep experience in instructional design. She is an organizer for the DC Women in Agile Meetup, on the Program Committee for the Business Agility Conference in NYC in March 2020, and editor for Michael Hamman's book, Evolvagility. Currently, she speaks publicly on the topics of cognitive bias and developmental feedback and is working towards a book on agile techniques for overcoming cognitive bias.


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