Primary navigation:

QFINANCE Quick Links
QFINANCE Reference
Add the QFINANCE search widget to your website

Home > QFINANCE Dictionary > Definition of Abilene paradox

Definition of

Abilene paradox

General Management

theory of group decisions based on mistaken impressions a theory stating that some decisions that seem to be based on consensus are in fact based on misperception and lead to courses of action that defeat original intentions. The Abilene paradox was proposed by management professor Jerry Harvey in 1974 following a trip made by his family to the town of Abilene. One person suggested the visit and the others agreed, each believing that everyone else wanted to go. On their return, everyone admitted that they would rather have stayed at home. Harvey used this experience to illustrate the mismanagement of agreement, and of decision making in organizations when apparent consensus is actually founded on poor communication.

Definitions of ’Abilene paradox’ and meaning of ’Abilene paradox’ are from the book publication, QFINANCE – The Ultimate Resource, © 2009 Bloomsbury Information Ltd. Find definitions for ’Abilene paradox’ and other financial terms with our online QFINANCE Financial Dictionary.

Back to top