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    Individual and Group Decison-making

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    The CEO read your small groups strategic plan and is very impressed with your suggestions and the speed with which your group developed the plan. He would like more groups within the organization to be as effective and efficient as your group was with this project. In order for other members of management to benefit from your group's experience you are to create an article for the corporate management newsletter that addresses the following:


    1. What type of decision making process did your group use to arrive at a consensus decision?
    2. In what ways is the group decision making process different from the individual decision making process?
    3. Did your group avoid or reduce group biases or errors? If yes, how? If no, why not or what happened?
    4. What are the implications of social influence for individuals and organizations?

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    Solution Preview

    Interesting assignment! My understanding is that this is a group assignment, and your present task is to analyze how your group went about making the group decisions by answering dour questions. One approach is to address each question in terms of possible decision-making styles and methods that you used in your group, and then you can use this information to write up your final 2-3 page report. I also attached an excellent resource for other considerations.


    1. What type of decision-making process did your group use to arrive at a consensus decision?

    Let's look briefly at the different types of group decision-making methods (in attached file). Note: I highlighted one possible decision-making process that you could have used for your group. Does the participatory style fit, or did your group use another method of decision-making? If you used a different one, then go with the style that is a best fit with your decision-making model.

    For now, we will go with Participatory style.

    A. Participative Style:

    The group as a whole proceeds through the entire decision making process. The group defines the problem and performs all other functions as a group. The role of the leader is that of process facilitator.

    Specifically, your group could have followed the six-step guide called the standard agenda, and used brainstorming techniques to generate as many ideas and solutions as possible. Developed by John Dewey, reflective thinking involved a careful, systematic approach to a problem. Groups who use reflective thinking to make their decisions make use of a six-step guide called the standard agenda.

    1. Problem identification. What is the problem? What is wrong with the current situation?
    2. Problem analysis. View the current situation as a balance between restraining forces and helping forces. What are the forces in play in your group's situation?
    3. Criteria selection. What are the goals of the final decision?
    4. Solution generation. Generate as many solutions as possible. Avoid groupthink by listing many solutions.
    5. Solution evaluation and selection. Measure each solution against the criteria from step three.
    6. Solution implementation. Enact the chosen solution (http://www.csuchico.edu/sac/leaders/grpdecision.html).

    Then your group might have used the brainstorming technique for generating as many solutions as possible. When brainstorming, group members are encouraged to generate as many ideas about a particular topic as they can. For instance, group members may use brainstorming to generate as many solutions as they can in step four of the standard agenda. Group members should be encouraged to say anything that comes to mind when brainstorming. Every idea is written down and judgments about ideas are saved until later, when the group returns to all of the ideas and selects those that are most useful.

    The group's final decision was based on consensus. Specifically, the group members all agree on the final decision through discussion and debate. Everyone knew that what they thought and valued was considered by all, and there were no surprises when we voted. Everyone come to a consensus and agreed on the final list of recommendations, so the decision that was made is a fair and ...

    Solution Summary

    Referring to the scenario, this solution responds to the questions addressing aspects of decison-making e.g. type of decison-making process used by the group, differences between individual and group decison-making, ways the group reduced or avoided biases and the implications of social influence for individuals and organizations.