The Endowed Progress Effect: How Artificial Advancement Increases Effort
Journal of Consumer Research, Vol. 32, March 2006
9 Pages Posted: 11 Jun 2007
This research documents a phenomenon we call the endowed progress effect, whereby people provided with artificial advancement toward a goal exhibit greater persistence toward reaching the goal. By converting a task requiring eight steps into a task requiring 10 steps but with two steps already complete, the task is reframed as one that has been undertaken and incomplete rather than not yet begun. This increases the likelihood of task completion and decreases completion time. The effect appears to depend on perceptions of task completion rather than a desire to avoid wasting the endowed progress. Moderators include the reason, if any, offered for the endowment and the currency in which progress is recorded.
Keywords: progress effect, artificial advancement
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