Approaches to Decision Making
Approaches to Decision Making
There are two common ways to make decisions regarding changes in an organization, especially when others are involved in the end result. The two ways would be to make decisions individually, making the decision by yourself or by creating a committee, getting others involved in the process. Knowing that something needs to change, means that there has been a problem identified, evaluating alternatives and then selecting the solution. Depending on the problem and the criteria that will be evaluated in making the final decision, this will play an important factor on whether individually making the decision is better than a group decision. When making decisions and changes that are going to effect many, it typically is better to make group decisions.
For larger companies, it is typical that a committee or a team would be created. Bringing together individuals of the organization that would be effected by these changes. Having a committee involved in the decision brings more views, thoughts, past experiences and suggestions to the table to be evaluated for optimal solutions. Advantages of a group decision is there are more options contributed, the better chances that decisions made would be accepted by those involved in the decision as well. “Quantities and diversity of information are greatest when group members represent different specialities”. (Robbins, DeCenzo, & Coulter, 2011, p. 71).
Finding a suitable solution is half of the battle, the next half would be implementation. By having a group decision enforced, will increase the success of changes since they were a part of it and will encourage change. In the example provided about budgetary concerns, it would be suggested that a committee be created with upper management from finance, human resources, and department managers to discuss how overhead such as employees, supplies and other capital costs are effecting our business. Before having the initial meeting it would be suggested for each manager to evaluate their department and be ready to give suggestion of where they would be able to make individual changes without sacrificing the well being of the patients care.
Once all contributions are made from each department, hearing the options of solutions would allow the committee members to discuss the changes and place value on which options could be most beneficial. Options like reducing employee head count or hours, re-evaluating vendors where supplies are purchased from, eliminating overtime costs by having back up staff available or changing processes by reducing paper trails and going electronic. Each of these will need to be analyzed on immediate consequences or benefits and what the longer term effects will be. The disadvantage of working with a committee is that there will prolong the process of making a decision, more meetings, more time and there could be more resistant from individuals that will need to be “talked into” this decision.
In the example about making budget cuts, one could make the decision alone and not consult with any other departments. The individual making decisions to cut staff, supplies or capital costs would need to have a comprehensive understanding of all costs associated with the organization and what implications could be by reducing budgets. Even though it is just one person making the decision, it is very important to still do a thorough evaluation of what the problems are, evaluate multiple solutions and weigh the benefits or consequences of these changes. It would be very important to obtaining financial monthly statements/costs that are associated with each department.
The benefit of making decisions solely is that multiple meetings would be eliminated, do not need to “sell” your idea or solution to others, and a decision could be made quicker which will save time and money for the organization. The disadvantages of making a decision like this where it effects a group, out weigh the benefits. You do not have access to others input and past experiences who have dealt with similar situations or hearing what concerns your management will have. By not including others, you have a higher chance of the decision not being welcomed by all and having resistant to the change and implementation.
Robbins, S., DeCenzo, D., & Coulter, M. (2011). Fundamentals of Management: Essential Concepts and Applications (7th ed.).