Decision Making

Topics: Decision making, Decision theory, Decision engineering Pages: 9 (3469 words) Published: August 20, 2008
The difficulty in life is the choice. Well what a curious statement for me to make when that seems to be the totalitarian objective that we as individuals seek throughout our childhood and well into our adult lives; “the freedom of choice”. Then why does that statement seem to ring so true and prevalent in our society today? A culture where teachers and professors are now moving into the roles of “facilitators” where students are encouraged to get to answers to fundamental questions through discussions and finally making their own decision; as opposed to the fundamental “do as told” style. Well I think that basically comes down to the fact that history has shown us that there are multiple ways to achieve an objective and the only limit is our imagination. We need to learn how to make good decisions. Good decision-making brings about a better life. It gives you some control over your life. In fact, many frustrations with oneself are caused by not being able to use one's own mind to understand the decision problem, and the courage to act upon it. A bad decision may force you to make another one, as Harry Truman said, "Whenever I make a bum decision, I go out and make another one." Just like the common truism, if the first button of one's coat is wrongly buttoned, all the rest will be crooked. Good decisions are not accidents but are the results of sincere effort, proper direction, appropriate execution, and lastly but none the less important, great intentions. A decision is a final product of a specific mental/cognitive process by an individual or group (Wikipedia, __). When decision making is too complex or the interests at stake are too important, quite often we do not know or are not sure what to decide. In many instances, we resort to informal decision support techniques such as tossing a coin, asking an oracle, or just picking the one. In order for us to examine the Management decision making styles we should first look at the correct decision making process we should follow on a personal level. The basic 5 steps in the decision making process per (Arsham, ): 1.Deciding what the goal is that we want to achieve? In order for us to accomplish this we must evaluate our values and decide what goal is line with those values whether as an entity or even an organization. Values then have to be ranked in order of ascending to descending numerical values for us to make a decision analytically as to determining the goal. 2.What actions or alternatives can we pursue? The more alternatives that you can find the larger your success rate in making a good decision will be. 3.Predicting the Outcome? Analyze each alternative and predict a likely outcome for it. 4.Choose Decide which outcome will most closely fit your goal. 5.Implement Sometimes this is the hardest step because unless you actually go forward with a plan of action for the alternative you have chosen you will not achieve your goal or see a project to fruition. This includes the prospect of not implant a proper plan of action because the person still is waffling in their decision on which alternative to choose. When you shift the decision making process in the arena of an organization the same basic concepts apply and the same underlying tensions are faced. On a daily basis a manager has to make many decisions. Some of these decisions are routine and inconsequential, while others have drastic impacts on the operations of the firm for which he/she works. Some of these decisions could involve large sums of money being gained or lost, or could involve whether or not the firm accomplishes its mission and its goals. In our increasingly complex world, the tasks of decision-makers are becoming more challenging with each passing day. The manager must respond quickly to events that seem to take place at an ever-increasing pace. In addition, a decision-maker must incorporate a sometimes-bewildering array of choices and consequences into his or her decision....
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