What is Decision Making?

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Decision-making is considered as an integral part of a manager’s job. The reason is that every day a manager has to make decisions about one thing or the other. In this regard, a decision can be described as the process of selecting out of the available alternatives. Therefore, while making the decision, one course of action has to be selected out of the alternative course of actions that are available. In this way, a number of alternatives may be available to manager but it is the responsibility of the manager to select the best alternative.

Nature of decision-making:
A decision is always related with a problem, conflict or a difficulty. Therefore, decisions help in resolving these conflicts or to deal with these problems. In all the organizations, there are differences of opinions; however the decisions made by the managers can help in maintaining effectiveness of the group. Although it is not necessary that decisions have to be made in case of all problems and in some cases, only the supply of information may be sufficient. For example, there may be a conflict regarding when the various groups should report for re-orientation. Therefore in such a case, by supplying information regarding the training program for different groups, the situation can be handled. Decision-making requires the managers to select from the various alternatives that are available to them. However, the managers may have to select various possibilities before arriving at the final decision. In this way, decision-making is not only related with selecting the best alternative. Sometimes the material that is required for making a decision may be available but still it is not possible to arrive at a decision. Therefore, making a decision also requires a prediction regarding the future while keeping in mind the past as well as the information available at present. As the impact of a decision made in present has to be felt in future, it is necessary that the available information should be analyzed properly and a prediction regarding the future should be made. On the other hand, if the premises on which the decision is based are not true, it is highly probable that the decision will also be erroneous.

Many times, the decisions made by the managers are also impacted by the practice known as ‘follow the leader’. In this case, an influential manager or a leader of the group has set a precedent and this path is readily followed by the others. Therefore in such a case, the decisions made by the leader act as a guide for the others and they also make similar decisions. On the other hand, there are certain situations when the answers to the pertinent questions regarding a problem may also help in making the decision. With the help of these answers, the available choices can be narrowed down and in this way, they facilitate in making the decision.

This article has been written by KJ Singh a MBA Graduate from a prestigious Business School In India
Article Published:April 2, 2016
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