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Management

Decision Making Process by Manager to


drive company toward success
Main Body: 4372

Total Words: 5110

Date: 04/10/2018

2018-2019

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SMC+ UNIVERSITY
ASSIGMENT TOPIC: Decision Making Process by
Manager to drive Company toward success.
Module: Management

NAME: ABRAR KARIM

PROGRAM: Masters in Business Administration

Date: 04/10/2018

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Letter of Transmittal
04 October, 2018
Module Leader, KIMT and SMC+ University

Dear Mentor,

I have successfully completed the Assignment on Decision Making Process by Manager to


drive Company toward success. This assignment has enabled me to gain more knowledge and
also attain more practical experience. I appreciate any sort of criticism on the report and
welcome feedback that you will provide.

Thanking You,

Yours Sincerely,

ABRAR KARIM

Master’s in Business Administration, SMC+ UNIVERSITY, KIMT

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Acknowledgement
One of the most pleasant parts of submitting a report is the opportunity to convey gratitude to
those who have contributed in its successful completion. Unfortunately, no matter how
extensive, the word thanks, it is always inadequate in expressing the earnest gratefulness.
These acknowledgements are no exception.

Acknowledgements must also go to the course coordinator for their sincerity, willingness to
accept differences; enthusiasm for creativity and long hours of earnest hard work under the
pressure of knocking deadline; all of which has made this report possible and successful in
due time.

Gratitude must be conveyed to those who have helped gather information; information which
set the foundation of the report.

At last, I would like to convey our earnest gratefulness to our honorable module leader for
providing me with such an opportunity. The assignment has undoublty helped me gain a lot
of knowledge which can be carried down to my future career.

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Table of Contents
Abstract……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………6
Introduction……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………6
Objective…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….……7
Methodology…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….…….7
Characteristics of Decision Making………………………………………………………………………………..8
Advantage of Decision Making………………………………………………………………………………………..9
Steps involve in Decision Making…………………………………………………………………………….……10
Relationship between Decision Making and Planning…………………………………………...13
Difference between problem analysis and decision Making…………………………………13
Importance of Decision Making……………………………………………………………………………….…….13
Decision Making Style…………………………………………………………………………………………………..…..13
Types of Decision……………………………………………………………………………………………………………..…14
The process of Rational Decision Making……………………………………………………………….…..15
Assumption of Rational Decision Making Process……………………………………………………15
The Decision Making process in 5 steps………………………………………………………………………16
Decision Making Process in 3 steps…………………………………………………………………………..….17
Decisional process based on innovation conceptualization……………………………....…18
Complex decision-making process…………………………………………………………………………….…19
Conclusion ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….…..21
Reference……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….……..22

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Abstract
The decision-making process represents an on-going activity of managers. Contrary to the
common one, the strategic decision is being made in a longer time and on a detailed basis.
The managers can use models of decision -making in their activity to be more effective. This
paper presents a briefing on the development of the concept of management decision and it
illustrates summarized three models of decision-making process. The author’s contribution to
the paper is a conceptualization of the decision making process and a new, more complex
model of decision-making called CDP Model, based on literature review and own
observations and experience. The model takes into account the decision-making process as a
system and is a useful tool to managers in any field.

Keywords: strategic management, decision making process, decision making process


models, CDP model

Introduction
In each and every organization Decision making is the process of making choices by
identifying a decision, gathering information, and assessing alternative resolutions.
Using a step-by-step decision-making process can help the manager of any company to
make more deliberate, thoughtful decisions by organizing relevant information and
defining alternatives. This approach increases the chances that you will choose the most
satisfying alternative possible.

It is a primary function of Management. A manager’s major job is sound/rational


decision-making. He takes hundreds of decisions consciously and subconsciously.
Decision making is the key part of manager’s activities. Decisions are important as they
determine both managerial and organizational actions. A decision may be defined as “a
course of action which is consciously chosen from among a set of alternatives to achieve
a desired result. It represents a well-balanced judgement and a commitment to action.

It is rightly said that the first important function of management is to take decisions on
problems and situations. Decision-making pervades all managerial action it is a
continuous process. Decision-making is an indispensable component of the management
process itself.

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Objective
o Recognizing the various factors which influence a leader’s decision-making style
o Identifying the steps and analysing alternatives in a decision-making process
o Differentiate between the three primary decision-making approaches: avoiding,
problem solving, and problem seeking
o Identifying the characteristics of the rational decision-making process
o Summarizing the inherent flaws and arguments against the rational model of decision-
making within a business context

Methodology
For making this report I have used several sources of information. Mainly, I have used the
notes provided by our course professor. I have also used Google Scholar as the search engine
for finding and gathering some basic information for the assignment from several websites. I
also read many articles and journals from internet and prepared this assignment. For
preparing this report, I have also taken help from various management text books.

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Characteristics of Decision Making
Decision making implies choice: Decision making is choosing from among two or more
alternative courses of action. Thus, it is the process of selection of one solution out of many
available. For any business problem, alternative solutions are available. Managers have to
consider these alternatives and select the best one for actual execution. Here, planners/
decision-makers have to consider the business environment available and select the
promising alternative plan to deal with the business problem effectively. It is rightly said that
"Decision-making is fundamentally choosing between the alternatives". In decision-making,
various alternatives are to be considered critically and the best one is to be selected. Here, the
available business environment also needs careful consideration. The alternative selected may
be correct or may not be correct. This will be decided in the future, as per the results
available from the decision already taken. In short, decision-making is fundamentally a
process of choosing between the alternatives (two or more) available. Moreover, in the
decision-making process, information is collected; alternative solutions are decided and
considered critically in order to find out the best solution among the available. Every problem
can be solved by different methods. These are the alternatives and a decision-maker has to
select one alternative which he considers as most appropriate. This clearly suggests that
decision-making is basically/fundamentally choosing between the alternatives. The
alternatives may be two or more. Out of such alternatives, the most suitable is to be selected
for actual use. The manager needs capacity to select the best alternative.

The benefits of correct decision-making will be available only when the best alternative is
selected for actual use.

 Continuous activity/process: Decision-making is a continuous and dynamic process. It


pervades all organizational activity. Managers have to take decisions on various
policy and administrative matters. It is a never ending activity in business
management.

 Mental/intellectual activity: Decision-making is a mental as well as intellectual


activity/process and requires knowledge, skills, experience and maturity on the part of
decision-maker. It is essentially a human activity.

 Based on reliable information/feedback: Good decisions are always based on reliable


information. The quality of decision-making at all levels of the Organisation can be
improved with the support of an effective and efficient management information
system (MIS).

 Goal oriented process: Decision-making aims at providing a solution to a given


problem/ difficulty before a business enterprise. It is a goal-oriented process and
provides solutions to problems faced by a business unit.

 Means and not the end: Decision-making is a means for solving a problem or for
achieving a target/objective and not the end in itself.

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 Relates to specific problem: Decision-making is not identical with problem solving
but it has its roots in a problem itself.

 Time-consuming activity: Decision-making is a time-consuming activity as various


aspects need careful consideration before taking final decision. For decision makers,
various steps are required to be completed. This makes decision-making a time
consuming activity.

 Needs effective communication: Decision-taken needs to be communicated to all


concerned parties for suitable follow-up actions. Decisions taken will remain on paper
if they are not communicated to concerned persons. Following actions will not be
possible in the absence of effective communication.

 Pervasive process: Decision-making process is all pervasive. This means managers


working at all levels have to take decisions on matters within their jurisdiction.

 Responsible job: Decision-making is a responsible job as wrong decisions prove to be


too costly to the Organisation. Decision-makers should be matured, experienced,
knowledgeable and rational in their approach. Decision-making need not be treated as
routing and casual activity. It is a delicate and responsible job.

Advantages of Decision Making


There are 5 advantages of Decision Making Process for managers.

 Decision making is the primary function of management: The functions of


management starts only when the top-level management takes strategic decisions.
Without decisions, actions will not be possible and the resources will not be put to
use. Thus decision-making is the primary function of management.

 Decision-making facilitates the entire management process: Decision-making creates


proper background for the first management activity called planning. Planning gives
concrete shape to broad decisions about business objectives taken by the top-level
management. In addition, decision-making is necessary while conducting other
management functions such as organising, staffing, coordinating and communicating.

 Decision-making is a continuous managerial function: Managers working at all levels


will have to take decisions as regards the functions assigned to them. Continuous
decision making is a must in the case of all managers/executives. Follow-up actions
are not possible unless decisions are taken.

 Decision-making is essential to face new problems and challenges: Decisions are


required to be taken regularly as new problems, difficulties and challenges develop
before a business enterprise. This may be due to changes in the external environment.
New products may come in the market, new competitors may enter the market and

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government policies may change. All this leads to change in the environment around
the business unit. Such change leads to new problems and new decisions are needed.

 Decision-making is a delicate and responsible job: Managers have to take quick and
correct decisions while discharging their duties. In fact, they are paid for their skill,
maturity and capacity of decision-making. Management activities are possible only
when suitable decisions are taken. Correct decisions provide opportunities of growth
while wrong decisions lead to loss and instability to a business unit.

Steps involve in Decision Making Process


Decision-making involves a number of steps which need to be taken in a logical manner. This
is treated as a rational or scientific 'decision-making process' which is lengthy and time
consuming. Such lengthy process needs to be followed in order to take
rational/scientific/result oriented decisions. Decision-making process prescribes some rules
and guidelines as to how a decision should be taken / made. This involves many steps
logically arranged. It was Peter Drucker who first strongly advocated the scientific method of
decision-making in his world famous book 'The Practice of Management' published in 1955.
Drucker recommended the scientific method of decision-making which, according to him,
involves the following six steps:
 Defining / Identifying the managerial problem,
 Analysing the problem,
 Developing alternative solutions,
 Selecting the best solution out of the available alternatives,
 Converting the decision into action, and
 Ensuring feedback for follow-up.

The figure given below suggests the steps in the decision making process:-

Identifying the Analysing the Developing


Problem Problem Alternative
Solutions

Process of
Decision
Making

Follow up of Converting Selecting the


Action Taken Decision into best Solution
action

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1. Identifying the Problem: Identification of the real problem before a business
enterprise is the first step in the process of decision-making. It is rightly said that a
problem well-defined is a problem half-solved. Information relevant to the problem
should be gathered so that critical analysis of the problem is possible. This is how the
problem can be diagnosed. Clear distinction should be made between the problem and
the symptoms which may cloud the real issue. In brief, the manager should search the
'critical factor' at work. It is the point at which the choice applies. Similarly, while
diagnosing the real problem the manager should consider causes and find out whether
they are controllable or uncontrollable.

2. Analysing the Problem: After defining the problem, the next step in the decision-
making process is to analyse the problem in depth. This is necessary to classify the
problem in order to know who must take the decision and who must be informed
about the decision taken. Here, the following four factors should be kept in mind:

 Futurity of the decision,


 The scope of its impact,
 Number of qualitative considerations involved, and
 Uniqueness of the decision

3. Collecting Relevant Data: After defining the problem and analysing its nature, the
next step is to obtain the relevant information/ data about it. There is information
flood in the business world due to new developments in the field of information
technology. All available information should be utilised fully for analysis of the
problem. This brings clarity to all aspects of the problem.

4. Developing Alternative Solutions: After the problem has been defined, diagnosed on
the basis of relevant information, the manager has to determine available alternative
courses of action that could be used to solve the problem at hand. Only realistic
alternatives should be considered. It is equally important to take into account time and
cost constraints and psychological barriers that will restrict that number of
alternatives. If necessary, group participation techniques may be used while
developing alternative solutions as depending on one solution is undesirable.

5. Selecting the Best Solution: After preparing alternative solutions, the next step in the
decision-making process is to select an alternative that seems to be most rational for
solving the problem. The alternative thus selected must be communicated to those
who are likely to be affected by it. Acceptance of the decision by group members is
always desirable and useful for its effective implementation.

6. Converting Decision into Action: After the selection of the best decision, the next step
is to convert the selected decision into an effective action. Without such action, the
decision will remain merely a declaration of good intentions. Here, the manager has to
convert 'his decision into 'their decision' through his leadership. For this, the
subordinates should be taken in confidence and they should be convinced about the

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correctness of the decision. Thereafter, the manager has to take follow-up steps for the
execution of decision taken.

7. Ensuring Feedback: Feedback is the last step in the decision-making process. Here,
the manager has to make built-in arrangements to ensure feedback for continuously
testing actual developments against the expectations. It is like checking the
effectiveness of follow-up measures. Feedback is possible in the form of organised
information, reports and personal observations. Feedback is necessary to decide
whether the decision already taken should be continued or be modified in the light of
changed conditions.

Every step in the decision-making process is important and needs proper consideration by
managers. This facilitates accurate decision-making. Even quantitative techniques such as
CPM, PERT/OR, linear programming, etc. are useful for accurate decision-making. Decision-
making is important as it facilitates entire management process. Management activities are
just not possible without decision-making as it is an integral aspect of management process
itself. However, the quality of decision-making should be always superior as faulty/irrational
decisions are always dangerous.

Various advantages of decision-making (already explained) are easily 'available when the
entire decision-making process is followed properly. Decisions are frequently needed in the
management process. However, such decisions should be appropriate, timely and rational.
Faulty and hasty decisions are wrong and even dangerous. This clearly suggests that various
advantages of decision-making are available only when scientific decisions are taken by
following the procedure of decision-making in an appropriate manner.

For accurate/rational decision-making attention should be given to the following points:


 Identification of a wide range of alternative courses of action i.e., decisions. This
provides wide choice for the selection of suitable decision for follow-up actions.
 A careful consideration of the costs and risks of both positive and negative
consequences that could follow from each alternation.
 Efforts should be made to search for new information relevant to further evaluation of
the alternatives. This is necessary as the quality of decision depends on the quality of
information used in the decision-making process.
 Re-examination of the positive and negative effects of all known alternatives before
making a final selection.
 Arrangements should be made for implementing the chosen course of action including
contingency plans in the event that various known risks were actually to occur.
 Efforts should be made to introduce creativity and rationality in the final decision
taken.

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Relationship between Decision Making and
Planning
There is close relationship between planning and decision-making. Decision-making has
priority over planning function. It is the starting point of the whole management process. In
fact, decision-making is a particular type of planning. A decision is a type of plan involving
commitment to resources for achieving specific objective. According to Peter Drucker, it is
the top management which is responsible for all strategic decisions such as the objectives of
the business, capital expenditure decisions as well as operating decisions such as training of
manpower and so on. Without management decisions, no action can take place and naturally
the resources would remain idle and unproductive. The managerial decisions should be
correct to the maximum extent possible. For this, scientific decision-making is essential.

Difference between Problem Analysis and


Decision Making

While they are related, problem analysis and decision making are distinct activities.
Decisions are commonly focused on a problem or challenge. Decision makers must gather
and consider data before making a choice. Problem analysis involves framing the issue by
defining its boundaries, establishing criteria with which to select from alternatives, and
developing conclusions based on available information. Analysing a problem may not result
in a decision, although the results are an important ingredient in all decision making.

Importance of Decision Making


Decision-making is a truly fascinating science, incorporating organizational behaviour,
psychology, sociology, neurology, strategy, management, philosophy, and logic. The ability
to make effective decisions that are rational, informed, and collaborative can greatly reduce
opportunity costs while building a strong organizational focus. As a prospective manager,
effective decision-making is a central skill necessary for success. This requires the capacity
to weigh various paths and determine the optimal trajectory of action.

Decision Making Styles


There are countless perspectives and tactics to effective decision-making. However, there are
a few key points in decision-making theory that are central to understanding how different
styles may impact organizational trajectories. Decision-making styles can be divided into
three broad categories:

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 Psychological: Decisions derived from the needs, desires, preferences, and/or values
of the individual making the decision. This type of decision-making is cantered on the
individual deciding.

 Cognitive: This is an integrated feedback system between the individual/organization


making a decision, and the broader environment’s reactions to those decisions. This
type of decision-making process involves iterative cycles and constant assessment of
the reactions and impacts of the decision.

 Normative: In many ways, decision making (particularly in groups, such as within an


organization) is about communicative rationality. This is to say that decisions are
derived based on the ability to communicate and share logic, using firm’s premises
and conclusions to drive behaviour.

Types of Decision
There are 3 approaches to decision making are avoiding, problem solving and problem
seeking.

Every decision-making process reaches a conclusion, which can be a choice to act or not to
act, a decision on what course of action to take and how, or even an opinion or
recommendation. Sometimes decision making leads to redefining the issue or challenge.
Accordingly, three decision-making processes are known as avoiding, problem solving, and
problem seeking.

Avoiding

One decision-making option is to make no choice at all. There are several reasons why the
decision maker might do this:

 There is insufficient information to make a reasoned choice between alternatives.


 The potential negative consequences of selecting any alternative outweigh the
benefits of selecting one.
 No pressing need for a choice exists and the status quo can continue without harm.
 The person considering the alternatives does not have the authority to make a
decision.
One example of avoiding a decision occurs routinely at the Supreme Court of the United
States (as well as other appellate courts). The Supreme Court will decline to hear a case
because, in their judgment, the issues have not been sufficiently considered in lower courts.

Problem Solving

Most decisions consist of problem-solving activities that end when a satisfactory solution is
reached. In psychology, problem solving refers to the desire to reach a definite goal from a
present condition. Problem solving requires problem definition, information analysis and
evaluation, and alternative selection.

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Problem Seeking

On occasion, the process of problem solving brings the focus or scope of the problem
itself into question. It may be found to be poorly defined, of too large or small a scope,
or missing a key dimension. Decision makers must then step back and reconsider the
information and analysis they have brought to bear so far. We can regard this activity as
problem seeking because decision makers must return to the starting point and specify
the issue or problem they want to address.

The process of Rational Decision Making


Rational decision making is a multi-step process for making choices between alternatives.
The process of rational decision making favours logic, objectivity, and analysis over
subjectivity and insight. The word “rational” in this context does not mean sane or clear-
headed as it does in the colloquial sense.

The approach follows a sequential and formal path of activities. This path includes:
 Formulating a goal(s)
 Identifying the criteria for making the decision
 Identifying alternatives
 Performing analysis
 Making a final decision

Assumption of Rational Decision Making


Process
The rational model of decision making assumes that people will make choices that maximize
benefits and minimize any costs. The idea of rational choice is easy to see in economic
theory. For example, most people want to get the most useful products at the lowest price;
because of this, they will judge the benefits of a certain object (for example, how useful is it
or how attractive is it) compared to those of similar objects. They will then compare prices
(or costs). In general, people will choose the object that provides the greatest reward at the
lowest cost.

The rational model also assumes:

 An individual has full and perfect information on which to base a choice.

 Measurable criteria exist for which data can be collected and analysed.

 An individual has the cognitive ability, time, and resources to evaluate each
alternative against the others.

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The rational-decision-making model does not consider factors that cannot be quantified, such
as ethical concerns or the value of altruism. It leaves out consideration of personal feelings,
loyalties, or sense of obligation. Its objectivity creates a bias toward the preference for facts,
data and analysis over intuition or desires.

The decision-making process in 5 steps


The decision-making process in five steps (Doyle, J., 2012), presented in Figure no.
1, is also used in the managerial practice and implies: identifying the decision to
make, examining the options, gathering information, decision-making and
implementing the decision.

Figure no.1. Decision Making Process in 5 steps

Options examination: various versions and options are formulated and considered and
possible options, any assumptions and missing information are written down. Brainstorming
is a technique that implies the group and helps the decision maker in deciding steadily.

Gathering information: missing information may be gathered on the internet, at the library
or other sources (analysis of market maturity, marketing studies, studies on competition,
analysis of growth opportunities, cost analysis etc.).
Decision making: the gathered information is included in the evaluation options (step 2).
The decision maker should feel happy after the decision made and if the decision is team-
made then the decision maker should get the group support for it to be successful.

Decision implementation: information gathered and additional arguments collected during


the decision formulating are used for creating an implementation plan. Steps to follow, their
order, roles and responsibilities for a steady basis are determined.

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Decision-making process in 3 steps
Another author (Chestnut, D., 2013) considers that the decision-making process includes
three stages: identification, building decision components and implementation, which are
shortly presented in Figure no. 2.

Figure no. 2. Decision-making process in 3 steps

Identification: managers gather data within the organization; they apply mathematical and
statistical methods on data gathered and use the results to sustain the decision choice.

Building components: when presenting an alternative, the decision-maker evaluates a result


for each possible decision until he or she takes into consideration all possible combinations,
constraints and limitations. Then statistical and mathematical equations are applied to the
problem. The result is to be a list of deciding options to which successful probabilities are
associated.

Implementation: in order to implement decision, a support system may be used for collecting
and analysing data inside the organization and offering useful information to managers

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Decisional process based on innovation
conceptualization
Different decisional process models analysis allows the conceptualization of the process,
where the innovation takes a distinctive role (Figure no. 3). The innovation based on
decision-making process allows the creativity stimulation.

Context Management Decision


Description

Innovation

Figure no.3... The innovative decision-making process

The process components are the followings: context description, innovation, decision and
management. In this process specific techniques such as brainstorming, Delphi method and
others are used to stimulate the creativity.
Context description: information is gathered and conditions, restrictions and criteria for
decision making are determined.
Innovation: options are determined and substantiated with an innovative process.
Decision: version that best meets the conditions, restrictions and criteria determined is
chosen.
Management: it involves the management of gathering information and of defining the
context in which decisions are made, innovation management in determining decision
alternatives, decision-making management and decision-making results management.

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Complex decision-making process
The managers in the organizations may choose any of the process models summarized above.
According to gathered analysis models and to own observations and experience, we consider
that a more complex model might be useful to managers and might be adapted to any
situation. We called the model CDP (Complex Decisional Process) as is synthesized in
Figure no. 4.

Figure no.5. The Model of Decision-making Process (CDP model)


The proposed model takes into account the three stages of a cybernetic system adapted to
decision-making managerial issues: inputs, processes and outputs.

The inputs are: environmental factors, information and/or data, knowledge, team’s creative
ideas and ethical principles. Environmental factors influence the decisions. Constraints in the
external environment, internal risks and limits, especially those related to resources are taken
into account. Information gathered or had in possession, as well as historical data, current or
forecasted ones of the organization and of the external environment represent the starting

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point in developing decision alternatives in accordance with organization’s internal
possibilities.

The organization, teams and manager’s accumulated knowledge complete the context and the
ethical principles had in view refines it.

The decision process includes: defining the problem, gathering information, identifying the
alternatives, finding consensus and selecting the alternative, foreseeing consequences of the
decision and implementing it.

Defining the problem coincides most of the time with the decision making although there are
a series of debates and arguments regarding the difference between solving a problem and
decision-making process (FEMA, 2005). The clear description of the problem facilitates the
other steps of the process. Gathering information suppose selecting those information and
data which match the best with the problem described and which are taken from the system
inputs. Proceeding to identify alternatives is made on the basis of data and information
collected. Selecting the most suitable situation analysed among the alternatives identified is
made by involving team members. The communication with team members leads not only to
a consensus but to reduce the stress and decision-making timing. Here is useful the 80/20 rule
which means obtaining 80% outputs with 20% inputs. Before applying the decision it is
analysed in terms of the consequences implied on organization and its environment and of the
risks of success or failure of the decision

The outputs of the system can be: the management success or failure, the organization’s
knowledge in the organizational learning process, the team reinforcement, the organization’s
values and beliefs. The process is repeated by changing the option if the decision fails. But
never mind whether management is successful or not in decision-making, organization has to
gain by acquiring new knowledge, by closing relationships within the team and by
developing its values.

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Conclusion
The managers’ decision-making process has developed over time not only due to the
complexity of the problems they are facing, but also to the contribution of theorists and
practitioners in enriching specific literature.

Achieving the organization’s goals in a complex and volatile environment where managers
are forced to make faster decisions and to change them as fast, decision-making models are
useful. Therefore, in the decision-making process, managers can choose between several
models the one which best suits to the decision-making problem.

The literature, creativity and data bases are conclusive factors in the decision-making
process. The paper presents briefly a few examples. In addition, the decision making process
conceptualization and the CDP Model represent some contributions to their development.

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