Every once in a while I stop and think about my perception of value and it always amazes me. For example, I’ll be at the grocery store shopping with one of the kids and they’ll ask for a dessert. Pie is one of the favourites in my household so usually the kids want to buy a pumpkin or apple pie to bring home for dessert. I’ll look at the price tag of 4.99 or 5.99 and I’ll hesitate to buy it. It’s pricey I say to myself. We don’t need it I’ll say to myself. Some days I’ll buy the pie anyway. More often than not I’ll tell the kids that the pie really isn’t a necessary part of the budget and I’ll move on.
Another day I might be at a restaurant for dinner and who can resist the gorgeous pictures of desserts on the dessert menu? Oh! Pecan pie! I haven’t had that in ages. I’ll order a piece of pie for dessert. For 5.99. I’ll eat it, enjoy it, and not think twice about the price.
But when I think about it later (and there’s no pie in sight!) I’ll realize that while I hesitated over an entire pie for 5.99, which I perceived as poor value for my money, I readily ordered an 8th of a pie in a restaurant for 5.99 without thinking twice. Was the pie from the grocery store inferior to the pie served in the restaurant? No. In fact, likely were made at the same bakery. So why was the store bought pie inferior? Was the service of having someone deliver the pie to my table worth a markup of 8 times the price over buying it in the store? No. I really can’t figure it out. Logic fails me here.
How do your perceptions affect your choices?