Graeme Newell

Sunk Cost Fallacy

The Sunk Cost Fallacy is our brain’s stubborn reluctance to abandon a strategy because we’ve put so much work into it. It makes us obstinate to change. It blinds us to innovation.

This is one of the toughest cognitive biases to overcome because our brain has a powerful inclination to stick with an existing plan. We’ve often worked months, even years on these projects.
Most of us don’t realize we’re under the spell of the Sunk Cost Fallacy, so stopping this train from barreling down the tracks just feels wrong…even if this ride is invariably headed for a precipice.

The key to overcoming the Sunk Cost Fallacy is to actively recruit OUTSIDE VOICES to provide feedback and perspective.

Do you have your own personal team of trusted confidantes who will give you brutally honest feedback on your work, your career and your personal life? All of us need pragmatic outside observers who have the courage to let us know when we’ve lost our objectivity. Each of us should have a go-to team of quiet confidantes who are brave enough to tell us our baby is ugly.