Decision Making Essay

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Decision Making Essay
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  • University/College:
    University of Chicago

  • Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter

  • Words: 2760

  • Pages: 11

Decision Making

1. introduction
1.1 What is Decision Making?
According to James Stoner, “decision making is the process of identifying and selecting a course of action to solve a specific problem”. In other words, decision making is defined as a process to identify problems, generate alternative solutions, select the best solutions available and implement them. Decision making is an essential aspect of modern management. It is a primary function of management. A manager’s major job is rational decision making. Rational decision making refers to making decisions based on facts, opinions and reasonable reasons. Generally, decisions that are made based on facts and opinions are the best decisions. Nevertheless, not all decision makers can make decisions that are rational. This is due to the limitations that exist in the environment or within the decision maker.

1.2 What is Decision Making Environments?
Every decision is made within a decision environment, which is defined as the collection of information, values, alternatives, and preferences available at the time of the decision. A good decision is not only influenced by the experience, skills and efficiency, but also the adequacy and validity of the information obtained that are related to the business environment (Abu Mansor et al., 1999). If we could obtain sufficient information, it will be easier for us to forecast situations that might occur in the future. Thereafter, the process of decision making will be easy and accurate. Generally, there are three information situation in the process of decision making.

(i) Decision making in certain condition – Able to obtain complete information to facilitate his decision making.

(ii) Decision making in uncertain condition – Does not have any information, the manager need to use his experience and discretion to make a decision.

(iii) Decision making in risky condition – Obtain incomplete information, only give some insight in predicting what will occur.

1.3 Types Of Group Decision Making
Generally, there are three main methods of group decision making, which are brainstorming, nominal group technique and Delphi technique.

Brainstorming is a technique that involves a group of people, usually between five to ten, generating ideas in the form of free association. This technique encourages the generation of ideas as much as possible without any criticism. In the early stage, all ideas no matter good or bad is accepted without evaluated for the purpose of motivating all members in the generation of ideas. After all ideas has been collected, evaluation will be made by discussing the advantages and disadvantages of the ideas given.

Nominal group technique is similar to brainstorming except that the approach is more structured. This method gathers information by asking individuals to respond to questions posed by a moderator, and then asking participants to prioritize the ideas or suggestions of all group members. The process prevents the domination of the discussion by a single person, encourages all group members to participate, and results in a set of prioritized solutions or recommendations that represent the group’s preferences.

Delphi technique, this technique is the modification of the nominal group technique, except that it involves obtaining the opinions of experts physically separated from each other and unknown to each other. This insulates group members from the undue influence of others. Generally, the types of problems handled by this technique are not specific in nature or related to a particular situation at a given time.

2. NOMINAL GROUP TECHNIQUE
2.1 Detailed Explanation & Steps
The nominal group technique is a method of decision making whereby group member propose and evaluate their ideas individually before sharing them with other group members. The steps involved are as follow:

Step 1 – Member form the group in name only and operate independently, generating ideas for solving the problem on their own, in silence and in writing. Members do not interact with each other so the strong personality domination is avoided. This is done to provide adequate time for thinking and reflection, social facilitation from seeing other working on the same task, sufficient time for generation of ideas. It also encourage individual creativity.

Step 2 – Each member will read out his or her ideas to everyone in the group for sharing. These ideas are usually written on the whiteboard for review and reference by all group members. This will increase group members ability to deal with large number of ideas.

Step 3 – A discussion is held to evaluate the advantage and disadvantages of each idea. This step provides an opportunity for clarification and elimination of misunderstanding, present the logic behind the idea or disagreement.

Step 4 – After all ideas are discussed, they are evaluated for their merits and drawbacks and each participating member is required to vote on each idea and assign it a rank on the basis of priority of each alternative solution.
The idea with the highest aggregate ranking is selected as the final solution to the problem.

2.2 Application of Nominal Group Technique in a Real-Life Situation The nominal group technique is used effectively for many situations. For instance, if it is a non-profit group that is working a project, several people may be trying to come up with the best way to garner donation on a website for the holiday season. Someone may suggest the idea that showing a positive outcome for charity through a visual image is the best way to encourage donors. Another person may feel that showing the stark imagery of the existing problem will encourage donors. Still others might propose that showing the work in progress is best.

With the nominal group technique, everyone is then given a chance to state which is best and why it is best before the votes are in. For example, someone may feel that by showing the positive outcomes for charity will more attract the donors as it helps a lot of unfortunate people. Some people also believe that today’s social problems can be demonstrated to improve everyone’s sympathy and lend a helping hand to help them. After this, only the strongest choice will remain; each individual group then ranks their preference numerically. The one that ends up highest overall ultimately is chosen.

Second example, The Ministry of Health for the government of Temasek wanted to analyse the State of the health delivery service. The evaluation staff elected to use the Nominal Group Technique and brought together a diverse group of physician, rural health technicians, public health personnel, field personnel, and a cross section of clients (from different income and social classes).

From the silent generation of ideas in writing, each participant to need contribute their ideas on “What are the barriers to receiving adequate health care in our country?” The ideas generated by the participant included no money pay for services, lack of adequate facilities, not enough doctors and not enough trained personnel. 2.2 Application of Nominal Group Technique in a Real-Life Situation(CONT) During discussion, each participant clarified their ideas such as since trained personnel can replace many function of the physician, then doctors and trained personnel deserve separate consideration. Lastly, each participant will need to vote for the three most significant barriers to receive adequate health care.

The nominal group technique is effective, but it is not ideal for use in every situation. For instance, it should not be used when some members of the group are extremely outspoken and others are quite shy. It is not ideal for use if there are a lot of people who work better independently and without clearly expressing their opinions except for work done. In general, it should not be used if there is an issue or consideration that a good percentage of group member will not desire to freely express their ideas. If the group is just getting to know one another, it can also be an ineffective tool because the trust and comfort levels will be low.

2.3 Nominal Group Technique Advantages
By using nominal group technique, there are a lot of advantages. First, it can create an oppoturnity for all members to generate a greater number of ideas than traditional group discussion. Because when during traditional group discussion, as members in the group express their idea by taking turns, sometimes, an idea that had spontaneously arisen might be lost while a member waits to speak. This will restricts the production of ideas.

Second, it can also diminishes competition and pressure to conform, based on status within the group. For example, when everyone is very active to voice their ideas in the group discussion, meanwhile someone cannot to provide any ideas. Commonly, this is due to stress and nervous feeling that make them cannot focus and think properly.

Furthermore, nominal group technique encourage everyone to contribute and prevents people from dominating the discussion. This allows everyone’s opinion to be heard and judged equally. The written generation of ideas encourages the commitment of the member in taking part in the planned action too. This can eventually help everyone to further understand the problem by listening all the group member ideas and opinions carefully.

In addition, voting is anonymous, there are opportunities for equal participation of group members and distraction (communication “noise”) inherent in other group methods are minimized. In some situation, some members are try not to propose ideas due to numerous reason such as friendship, to avoid conflict, afraid of being boycotted and others. In the end, the discussion cannot be made rationally and it affects decision making. Thus, anonymous voting can solve this issue.

2.3 Nominal Group Technique Advantages (CONT)
Besides, it can also motivates all members to get involved because they sense they are personally affected. Each of everyone’s ideas will get a sense of priority concerns that are represented among the group members. This naturally will make people feel that their ideas are being taken seriously and respected. They can obtain input from people of different backgrounds, experiences, and ages and this can help to taps into expertise that might otherwise not be used.

2.4 Nominal Group Technique Disadvantages
Every coins have two sides. Nominal group technique also has weaknesses. Because no verbal interaction is allowed, there is less of an opportunity for powerful individual to control the group. The ideas may be ill informed or impractical, it must be explained that the process being carried out is not being done so in a hypothetical sense but is a realistic problem requiring realistic solutions. In many group such a tendency results is important dimensions of the problem never emerging in the group because some individuals will only contribute an idea if it is well-developed and completely thought out.

Since each individual must identify dimensions on his own, aspects which never would have been considered are more likely to be considered. In a normal interacting group some members prefer to confine their participation to reacting to the ideas of others. Since this is not an option available to the members of nominal group, a greater number of ideas will probably be aired than would otherwise be true. In an interacting group, the dimensions identified first are the most obvious ones and, quite often, the group does not progress beyond them. In the nominal group, balanced participation issues a greater breadth of ideas.

Also, the disadvantages of the nominal group technique are that it constrains the cross fertilization of ideas such as one person’s idea does not lead to a spark to ignite the next person’s idea or improvement. One way to overcome this is to have a second round of idea generating after the first wave of ideas have been submitted. The process also critized as being too routine and mechanical in its nature and that is restricts ideas to one particular problem domain and discussion point.

2.4 Nominal Group Technique Disadvantages (CONT)
The nominal group technique is a good stand-alone technique for simple issues but must be combined with other technique when the issue is more complicated or affects people outside the sphere of influence within the group. For example, this technique is best for small group meetings like fact finding, idea generation and search of problem and solutions, whereas is not suitable for routine business, bargaining, problem with predetermined outcomes and settings where consensus is required.

3 CONCLUSION
Compare to Brainstorming and Delphi technique, I will prefer to use nominal group technique decision making method. This is because the nominal group technique has the potential to reduce the magnitude of group problems because it embodies those characteristics that are essential for that goal to be accomplished. It provides for balanced participation. There is no evaluation during the process and hence the climate will not be a threatening one. The group is not allowed to dwell on the most obvious aspects, therefore, a diversity of suggestions is usually forthcoming. Used in conjuction with the problem-solving steps, the nominal group technique will result in greater group productivity as well as more satisfaction to the participants.

Whereas Brainstorming decision making method is very time consuming. In a group, member have to listen to others and may spend time repeating their ideas until they get sufficient attention. Going through the protocol, processing and ordering the ideas can become a complex procedure. This also depends on the number and order of the generated ideas. In addition, certain team member may dominate the discussion. Members with the ability to express their ideas faster and more effective gain the general attention of the group. Some form of leadership can be formed in this way within the group, which might make others feel intimidated. Sometimes, people who are not very skilled at controlling their non-verbal reactions and might influence the creativity of others with their posture, gestures or facial expressions. On the other hand, attempting to control their non-verbal behaviour might inhibit their own creativity.

3. CONCLUSION (CONT)
The Delphi technique requires sustained involvement from the members. Member dropout is, therefore, a risk. The viewpoints and judgements that are collected through the Delphi technique are subjective in nature. Thus, the extent of accurancy and comprehensiveness of the data may, in some instances, be uncertain. Furthermore, if the Delphi technique is conducted through postal mail, the time required for the process can be lengthy, particularly if the panel of expert members is located in a variety of different countries. If you decide to use the Delphi approach with postal mail, you should expect to allocate between one to three month for data collection. It also required skills in written communication. People will easily get confuse or misunderstand of the ideas if they have a weak written communication skills.

In a nut shell, Nominal Group Technique will be my first choice if the situation is suitable.

4. REFERENCEs
Aaron Marquis, Demand Media (n.d) Different Techniques in Group
Decision-Making Available:
http://smallbusiness.chron.com/different-techniques-group-decisionmaking-34816.html [Retrieved on February 28,2014]

Carolyn Brahm, Brian H. Kleiner, (1996) “Advantages and disadvantages of group decision- making approaches”, Team Performance Management, Vol. 2 Iss: 1, pp.30 – 35 [Retrieved on March 3, 2014]

John A. Sample (1984) Nominal Group Technique: An Alternative to Brainstorming Available: http://www.joe.org/joe/1984march/iw2.php
[Retrieved on March 2, 2014]

Pak. J. Commer. Soc. Sci (2011) Nominal Group Technique and its Applications in Managing Quality in Higher Education Vol.5 (1), 81-99 Available : http://www.jespk.net/publications/46.pdf
[Retrieved on March 5,2014]

Smriti Chand Management (n.d) What are the Advantages and Disadvantages of Group Decision Making? – Explained! Available:http://www.yourarticlelibrary.com/management/what-are-the-advantages-and-disadvantages-of-group-decision-making-explained/3503/ [Retrieved on March 5,2014]

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Decision Making Essay

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Decision Making Essay
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  • University/College:
    University of California

  • Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter

  • Words: 5201

  • Pages: 21

Decision Making

Decision making can be define as the cognitive process “ resulting in the selection of a belief or a course of a action among several alternative possibillities. Every Decision Making process produces a final choice [James Reason (1990)] that may or may not promp action. Effective Decision Making is the study of identifying and choosing alternatives based on the values and preferences of the decision maker. Decision – making, is one of the central activities of management and is a huge part of any implemantation. For effective decision making, a person must be able to forecast the outcome of each option as well, and based on all these items, determine which option is the best for that particular situation.Human performance in decision making terms has been the subject of active reserach from several perspectives. Form a psychological perspective, it is necessary to examine individual decision in the context of a set of needs, preferences an individual has and values they seek.

Form cognitive perspective, the decision making process must be regarded as a continous process integrated in the interaction with the environment. From a normative perspective, the analysis of individual decisions is concerned with logic of decision making and rationality and the invariant chioce it leads to.[Daniel Kahneman, Amos Tversky 2000] The ability to make wise, educated decisions is essential to living a succesful and fulfilled life. Individuals, groups or teams make decisions every day. Some decisions are very important and affect lot of people whereas other decisions are small and affect only one or two people. A decision-making process based on data leads to good decisions. A major concern in management has been to understand and improve decision making. [Isabel Briggs Myers|Myers, I.1962]. There have been two approaches to management decision making [Huber, 1980]. The first is concerned with development and application of normative decision rules based on formal logic derived from economics or ststistics.

The second involves descriptive accounts of how people actually go about making judgements, decisions and choices. [Isable B. Myers|Myers,I. (1962)]. Decision making can usually be improved by breaking a problem into parts, working on the parts separately, and then combining themm to make final decision. It has been shown in a variety of works that business decision making environment is a unity of decision makers experience, belief and perceptions on one side, and decision support tools and techniques – on the other side.

In making important decisions, any info rmation sources that contain relevant important are going to be accessed and used. In this presentation we are going to show decision making process, models, and types. And explain how we can make strategic decisions in different situations. In fact in making decision in management has a significant role as Peter Drucker says 90 percent of activities in management is decision making, so we are going to discuss this important subject to show different aspect of it and find new ideas in this area research.

2.0 Decision Making Process and Steps;
Decision making can be categorised as a process evaluating a problem to find solution. It is always best to strive for the best decisions? There may not be the Probably not shooting for perfect solutions cann freeze decision makers into inaction. They also might be fear of making wrong decision.When gathering data and information becomes more important than making decisions and taking action sometimes, it’s better to make decisions, risk mistakes and then learn from the mikstakes when you make them. After all, then saying isn’t “decision make perfect”, it’s “practice makes perfect”. [S. Herper (2000)] As said coca cola decision which has resluted to story suggests the extensive need for decision making in business. A management decision typically typically affects a great number of people-customer, stockholders, employers and the general public.

Coca cola is accountable to more than 100000 shareholders and of extensive number of employee. Professional undertake to see the managers decision which reflected its positive returns in their revenue report.It has emphasise on the welfare of the employees and the economis health of the community in large and take into consideration the effect to the country as whole. To strive and prosper, proffessional managers should be able to withstand the pressure and make sound decision. Companies do not want dynamics failures; they require individuals wha are properly equipped to make decisions. It doesn’t mean that the decision makers (managers) is 100 percent is accurate most of the time.

They also tends to make wrong decisions most of the time at the expense of the shareholders.It does suggest that succesful managers have a higher batting average than les succesful managers. [R. Wayne Mondy (1993)] The process of decision making does not occur in tandem. The organization external environment influence the decision making process and the internal environment assist what and how the decision making should take place. For example the success of Pepsi-Cola in gaining market share while Coca Cola lost it and help to convince Goizueta that was needed. Whether a decision is programmed or none programmed and regardless of managers choice of the classical, administrative, or political model of decision making, a decision making process typically hasfive steps:

1) Idenitify the problem or opportunity
2) Develop alternative
3) Evaluate alternative
4) Choose and implement the best alternative
5) Evaluate the decision

2.1. Identify the problem or opportunity: according to Harold Leavitt, “a business leader must have thre major talents: problem solving and subsequent decision making, implementing and visionary and entreprenuel talents”. Some people view decisions making only as problem solving, however problems are best treated as opportunities. The first in the decision making process should be to look for alternatives before a decision is made. As known there is no one best decision method is exist. All problem should be treated as opportunities. Eventually, problems will make themselves evident. All problem can be converted to opportunity. All existing problem can be corrected if managers face the problem as opportunity to progress. Managers confront a decision requirement in the form of either a problem or an opportunity.

A problem occurs when organizational achievement notaccomplishment is less than establishment goals. An opportunity exists when m met as ecpectaion of an organization and exceed specified targets of an organizations. Identifying of a problem or opportunity is the first step in the decision sequence and requires survillance of the internal and external environment for issues that merit executive attention. [Richard L. Daft (2005)] Managers often search and evaluate the world around them to determine the progres of the organization .Some information comes from periodic financial reports, performance reports, and other sources that designed to discover problems before they become too serious. Managers also take advantage of informal sources. They talk to other managers, gather opinions on how things are going, and seek advice which problems should be talked.

2.2 Develop alternatives: A typical problem can be solved in various ways and method. Several alternatives is available before a decison is made. The choices that the decision maker has to decide are alternatives. A decision making process is utmost important and a feasible way to solve the a probleeThe only alternatives that really counts is the one judged best among those considered. At this point in the decision making process, however, it is important to consider all feasible ways by which the problem can be solved. Once the problem or opportunity has been recognised and analyzed, decision makers begin to consider m (opportunity).

The next stage is to generate possible alternative solutions that will respond to the need of the situation and correct the underlying causes. One study found that limiting the search for alternatives is a primary csuse of decision failure in organizations. [Paul C. Nutt (1999)]. Decision alternatives can be though of as the tools for reducing the difference between the organizations current and desired performance. Once a problem or opportunity has come to managers attention, the understanding of the situation should be refined. Diagnoses is the step in the decision making process in which managers analyzes underlying casual factors associated with the decision situation. Managers make a mistake here if they jump right into generating alternatives without first exploring the causes of the problem more deeply. [C. Kepner and B. Tregoe (1965)].

2.3 Evaluate Alternatives: Almost all possible solutions there are advantages and disadvantages. But there maybe be only one solution for any existings problem (opportunity). It may also might not be the only best solutions for the problem (opportumity). Coca cola alienate to replace the old coke is part of an alternative decision. It is essential that managers realistically appraise arguments for or against a particular alternative. Sometimes an idea might sounds good initially, but taking time to weigh the pros and cons of alternatives usually pays off. There are number of ways evaluating alternatives. One way is to list yhe strength and weakness of the problem (opportunity). Total consideration should be given and to avoid on the strength and weakness and overall importance should be given to conclude the alternative.

2.4 Choose and implement the best alternative: an alternatives implentation is chosen once the decision of choice is established. The decision of choice is the selection of the most promising of several alternative course of action. In order to choose best alternative one has to achive the desired results using the resources.In order to make choices on managers personality factors and willlingness to accept risk and uncertainty. At this stage the use of managerial, administrative, and persuasive abilities to ensure that the chosen alternative is carried out. It also has a similirarity to the idea of strategic implementation. The ultimate success of the chosen alternative depends on the whether it can be translated into action. In the evaluation stage of the decision process, decision makers gather information that tells them how well the decision was implemented and whether it was effective in achieving its goals.

Feed back pertinent because decision making is a continous, never ending process. When an executive or board of directors votes yes or no then the decision making is not completed.The feed back provides decision makers with information that can assist to new decision cycle. What separate the succesful managers and less succesful ones is the ability to select the best course of action from several possible alternatives. The alternative offering the highest promise of attaining the objective, taking into consideration the ovearall situation, should be selected. It is an easy task but fear to make a wrong decision will make the managers to avoid making decision at all. In most organization the onus is on the managers to make decision as they are high salaried and they carry the task to make a sound decision.

2.5 Evaluate the decision: For completing a decision-making process one have to first expose to the realities of the business environment. An objective assessment required to turn the problem into opportunity and this implementation does not complete the decision making process. [R.Wayne et al (2005)]

3. Ethical Decision Making: Half of all decisions taken be managers not necessarily solev the problem after all. Most of the time they ignore ethical questions. High ethical and guideline standards needs to put into consideration before performing the management functions. When making unpopular decision such as layoffs, one has to be ethical by giving advance notice and assisting them to find a new job elsewhere or within the organization. Couple of test need to be taken to evaluate oneself, are we making the right decision or not. Firstly ask yourself, “Are there any legal restrictions or violations that will result from this action? If so, try other alternative course of action. Secondly “does it ciolate the company code of ehics?” If yes find a different path to follow. Thirdly ask “does this mmet the guideline of my own ethical philosophy?” and if the answer is “yes”, then your decision must still pass two important test. [Gitman et al (2008)

The feeling test: now you must ask, “How does it make me feel?” this will enable yourself to evaluate your comfort level in producing a particular decision. A sense of discomfort will seep in if you’ve make a wrong decision where one will loss of sleep or appetite and my go into depression. Front page of the newspaper test: the final test is the “front page of the newspaper” the question to be asked is how a critical and objective reporter would report your decision in a front page story. [Gitman et al (2008)] Decision relos: According to Mitzberg: the time managers spend obtaining and sharing information is not an end in itself. The time spent taking to and obtaining and sharing information with people inside and outside the company is useful to managers because it helps them make good decisions. According to Mitzberg, managers engange in four decisional sub roles: entreprenuer, disturbance handler, resource allocator and negotiator. [Chuck Milliams (2005)]

4. Decision Making Models
Decision making models: primary decisions making models: the rational model and the bounded rationality model. The rational (also called the classical model), the decisio maker attempts to use optimizing, selecting and best possible alternative. In bounded rationality model (also called the administrative that meet the minimal criteria. [Robert N. Lusssier (2006)]. Making better decisions: modern research shows that managers, who make the best decisions, don’t overanalyze by relying on rational decision making model, nor do they oversimplify by relying solely on their intuition. Instead, many managers utilize a concept refered to as “recognitional decision making”. Recognition decision making leads to quicker decisions than rational decision making because it integrates the use of memory in the context of a situation in order to develop an immediate feel for the current situation. [Chuck Williams (2005)]

4.1 Classical Model: the classical model of decision model of decision making is based on economic assumptions. This model has arisen within the management literature because managers are expected to make decsisions that are economically sensible and fit the organizations’ best economic interests. The four assumptions underlying this model are as follows: 1. The decision maker operates to accomplish goals that are known and sgreed on. Problems are precisely formulated and defined. 2. The decision maker strives for conditions of certainty, gathering complete information. All alternatives and the potential results of each are calculated.

Assign 3. Criteris for evaluating alternatives are known. The decision maker selects the alternative that will maximize the economic return to the organization. 4. The decision maker is rational and uses logic to assign values, order preferences, evaluate alternatives, and make the decision that will maximize the attainment of organizational goals. The classical model of decision making is considered to be normative, which means it defines how a decision maker shouls make decisions. It does not describe how managers actually make decisions so much as it provides guidelines on how to reach an ideal outcome for the organization.

4.2 Rationality: It is frequently said that efective decision making must be rational. People acting and deciding rationality are attempting to reach some goals that can not be attain without action. They must have a clear understanding of alternatives coerces by which a goal can be reached under existing circumstances and limitations. They also must have information and the ability to analyze and evaluate in light of the goal sought. In many respects, the classical model represents an ideal model of decision making that is often un attainable by real people in real organizations. It is most valuable when applied to programmed decisions and to decisions characterized by certainty or risk, because relevant information is available and probabilities can be calculated. [Richard L. Daft (2005)].

Programmed decisions are design based on the historical data to enable all levael of managers are able to make a decision base on the same situation problems all the time. As such it can be concluded as a set of policy serve as a guideline and also act as a SOP. A non programme are made to situations that are unique, are poorly defined and largely unstructured, and ahev impportant consequences for the organizations. The decision regarding a recall at Toyota is an example of a a non programmed decision. Another good example comes from the financial services industry. Decision to to acquire a company, build a new factory, develop a new product or service, enter a new geographical market, or relocate head quarters to another city are all non programmed decisions.

4.3 Bounded rationality: The administrative model is base on the work of Herbert A. Simon. Simon proposed two concepts that were instrumental in shaping the administrator model: bounded rationality and satisficing. There are limitations to the bounded rationality or boundaries. Organizations are incredibly complex and managers have the time and ability to process only a limitated amount of information with which to make decisions. Because managers do not have the time or cognitive ability to process complete information about complex decisions. Satisficing is a decision made at the first encounter of any situation.

Minimal consideration given to consider any alternative. There is no time frame on how long this process will take place. It merely rely on assumptions. 1. Organization decision goals are often not clear, exist dispute and always have disagreement among the managers. 2. Rational method are not often popular amongst managers alike and only confirned to simplistic point of view and does not get the attention of of real organization events. 3. Managers searches for alternative sre kimited because of human, information, and resources constraints. 4. All the decision makers (managers), often prefer the satisficing rather than maximizing solution, partly because they have limited information and partly because they have only unclear for what constitute a maximizing solution. 4.4 Administrative model: This model is description are charecterized by uncertainty and ambiguity.

Most of the management decisions are normally programmeable to lend themselves to any degree of qualification. The decision maker (manager) are unable to decide and economical rational decision. None programmed decisions: are used for unstructured, novel, and ill-defined situations of a nonrecuring nature. Example is the developing of the four wheel drive passenger car by Audi. In fact strategic decision, in general, are none programmed decisions. Most decisions are neither completely programmed decisions. Most decisions are neither completely programmed nor programmed none programmed: they are a combination of both. [Heinz Weihrich et al (2005)].

The administration model of decision making is based on the work of Herbert Simon. Simon proposed two concepts that were instrumental in shaping the administrative model: bounded rationally and satisfying. According to the administrative model: Decision goals are often unclear and disputing in nature and lack of consensus among managers. Managers are often not able to see the problems (opportunity) that exists in the organization. Rational procedure are not often and when they are they are confined to a simplistic view of the problem that does not captiure the complexity of real organization view.

4.4.1. Intuition: another aspect of administrative decision making is intuition. Intuition represents a quick apprehension of a decision situation based on past experience but without conscious thought. [Weston. H, Agor (1986)]. Intuitive decision making is not arbitrary or irrational, because it is based on years of practice and hand-on experience that enable managers (decision makers) to quickly identify solutions without going through pain staking computations.

4.5 Political model: is the model of decision making is often used for making none programmed decisions when conditions are uncertain, information is limited and there is often disagreement among managers about what goals to pursue or what course of sction to take. The political model closely resembles the real environment in which most managers and decision makers operate. Decisions are complex and invlolve many people, information is often ambigous, and disagreement and conflict over problems and solutions are normal. There are four basic assumptions of the political model. Organizations are made of groups with diverse interests, goals, and values. Information is ambigous and incomplete. Managers do not have the time, resources, or mental capacity to identify al dimension of the problem and process all relevant information. Managers engange in the push and pull of debate t decide goals and discuss alternatives. Decisions are the result of bargaining and discussion among coalition members. [Richard L. Daft (2005)]

4.6 The Kepner-Tregoe method: this model combines the oblective approach with some subjectivity. The subjectivity comes from determining “must” and “want” criteria and assigning weighted values to them. [Robert N. Lussier (2006)]. The Kepner-Tregoe method is a technique for comparing alternative using the criteria selected in steps 2 of the decision making model.[Robert N. Lussier (2006)].

5. Individual Decision Making and Group Decision Making Problems in any organization occurs when they were conflict of agreement of certain issues, as such one must decide who should participate to find the solution. As refering to the current trend the management favors increased employe participation. Using to group to improve decision making: according to study reported in fortune magszine. 1 percent of U.S. companies use teams and group to solve specific problem. Individuals who are highly defensive in this manner show significantly greater left prefrontal cortex activiry as measured by EEG than do less defensive individuals. ]Blackhart, G. C., & j. P. (2995)] Group decision making is critically important to meet the current fast moving organozations trends.

The informal or formal group exist to reach a consensus and to discuss a particular problem by creating a short list of acceptable alternatives or deciding on criteria for accepting an alternative. They are known as a support system and supported by electronically to support this system. [Turban, et al (2008)]. Group method invlove in decision making: It always discussed that it only involve a single manager to make a certain organization decision. This individual is responsible for the outcome of decisions under their control. Effective decisions generally combine high quality with acceptance by those affected by the decision. Group bring different resources to the decision making task. [R. Wayne et al (1993)] 5.1 Potential advantages of group decision making: The group has an advantage to make a sound decision on complex issues in comparison the individuals in a organization.

Special in case of significant none programmed decision and conditions of risk or uncertainty. – More information, alternatives, creativity and innovation: Generally a group of people contains more information than an individual. Than they can more creatine and innovative. They usually have options and alternative to apply before an effective decision is agreed upon. – Greater communication to the decision: The people engange in the decision making process have greater options in increased communication to implementing the decision. And improved participation in problem solving and decision making is rewarding and personally satisfying to the people and will improve morale and motivitation. – Training.

Allowing participation in decision making trains people to work in groups by developing group process skills. 5.2 Potential disadvantages of group decision making: – Wasted time – Satisficing – Domination and goal displacement: A certain sub group may dominate the group decision. Disagreement occurs when there were no 100 percent agreement from overall decision making process rather than pursuing goal of finding the best solution. – Conformity and group thinking: Inferior feeling and disagreement might crept in before a certain agreement takes precident and the end result will be a conflict. [Robert N. Lussier (2006)]. For creating, creative alternative solutions in groups decision making there are five popular techniques: Brainstorming

Synectics
Nominal grouping
Consensus mapping
Delphi technique

Brainstoming is the process of suggesting many possible alternatives without alternatives. Synectics is the process of generating novel alternative through role playing and fantasizing. Nominal grouping is the proces of generating of generating and evaluating alternatives using a structured voting method. This proces usually invloves six steps: listing, recording, clarification, ranking, discussion and voting. Consensus mapping is the process of developing group agreement on a solution to a prblem. The Delphi technique involves using a series of confidential questionnaires to refine a solution. [Robert N. Lussier (2006)] 5.3 Personal decision making: Imagine you were a manager at, GM, a local movie theater or the public library.

How would you go about making important decisions that might shape the future of your department or company? As we are aware that there is number of factors may effect how a managers make efevtive decisions. For example the decisions may be programmed or non programmed, situations are charactirized by various level of uncertainty, and managers may use the classical, administrative, or political model of decision making. [Richard L. Daft (2005)] 6.0 Innovative Group Decision Making:

The critical skill the managers possess to make a high quality decisions is an essential as they have to make majority of decision on their own. Is it practical for the managers make this decision?No. The rapid face of the business enviromnment calls for just the opposite i.e, for people throughout the organization to be invloved in decision making and have the information, skills, and freedom they need to respond immediately to prblems and questions. Managers bdo make some decisions as individuals, but decisions makers more often are part of a group.

Indeed majoir decisions in the byusiness world rarely are made entorely by a single manager. 6.1 Brainstorming is a method a group of people and discuss spontaneously wide range of ideas and policies before decision making. The efective brainstorming are people can be bulid on one anothers idea: number of ideas will be fielded and they will come to an consensus after wide range of ideas is discussed. It also have some drawbacks as there maybe making decision to please the superior or to impress colleagues. Studies found that when four people are asked to “brainstorm” individually. They typically come up with twice as many ideas as a group of four brainstoming.

6.2 Rigorous debate an efective decision maker (manager) always encourage a rigorous debate of a certain issues. It also recognize that constructive conflict based on divergenr points of view bring a problem into focus, clarify people’s ideas, stimulate creative thinking. Chuck Knight, the former CEO of Emerson Electric, always sparked debate during strategic planning meetings. Knight believed rigorous debate gave people a clearer picture of the competitive landscape and forced managers to look at all sides of an issue, helping them reach better decisions. 6.3 Groupthink pressures for conformity exist in almost any group, and particularly when people in a group like one another they tend to avoid anything that might create disharmony. It has tendency to surpress contrary opinions.

When the group thinking mode is activated, maintaining unity will be given priority ather than realistically challenging problems and alternatives. People censur their personal opinion and reluctant to criticize the opinion of others. 6.4 Bailout in the fast paced environment managers are risk takers and learniong from mistakes. Theyy also not hesitant to pull the plug when something not working. According to researches managers and organizations often continue to invest time and money in a solution despite strong evidence that is not appropriate. This move is knwons as escalating commitment. Managers might take initiative m to simply block or distort negative information because they do not want to be responsible to make a wrong decision.

Conclusion
The decision making in organizations invloves number of thories and easy to understand. The economic academician has derived methods to assist the decision makers (managers) to derive a good decision in order to avoid making bad decisions. It is very difficult to make good decisions without valid relevant information. It involves choosing between a wider process in problem solving. It can be through either an intuitive or seasoned process, or a combination of the two. There are number of stages to any structured decision making. For important decisions it is woryth always keeping a record of the steps you followed to make the decision. That way, if you n are ever critisized for making a bad decision, you can justify your thoughts based on the information and process you used at the time. Furthermore by keeping a record and enganging with the decision making process, you will be strengthening your under standing of how it works. This can make future decisions more easier for managers.

References.
1. James Reason (1990). Human Error.Ashgate. ISBN 1840141042. 2. Daniel Kahneman, Amos Trversky (20000. Choice, Values, Frames. The Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0521621720 3. Isabel Briggs Myers|Myers, l (1962) Introduction to type: A description of the
theory and applications of the Myers-Briggs type indicator, Consulting Psychologist Press, Palo Alto Ca., (1962) 4. Martinsons, Maris G., Comparing the Decision Styles of American, Chinese and Japanese Business Leaders. Best Paper Proceedings of Academy of Management Meetings, Washington, DC, August (2001) [1] 5. Blackhart, G. C.., & Kline, J.P. (2005). Individual differences in anterior EEG asymmetry between high and low defensive individuals during a rumination/distraction task. Personality and Individual Differences, 39, 427-437. 6. Drake, R.A. (1993). Processing persuasive arguments: 2. Discounting of truth and relevance as a function of agreement and manipulated activation asymmetry. Journal of Research in Personality, 27, 184-196. 7. Chua, E. F., Rand-Givanetti, E., Schcter, D. L., Albert, M., & Sperling, R.A. (2004). Dissociating confidence and accuracy: Functional magnetic resonance imaging shows origins of the subjective memory experience. Journal of Cognetive Neuriscince, 16, 1131-1142. 8. Selected Topics in Indeteministic System Intersystems Publications: California, (1989), p. 21 9. Richard L. Daft. New Era Of Management 10th edition, Thomson, (2005), pp 237-258. 10. Heinz Weirich and Harold Koontz. Management: A Global Perpective. 11th edition. McGrow Hill, (2005): pp144 11. R. Wayne Mondy and Shane R. Premenua. Management, Concepts, Practices, and Skills. 6th edition, Allyn and Bacon. (1993):pp116,123,128 12. Robert N. Lussier, Management Fundamentals: Concepts, Applications, Skills development, Thomson, (2005): pp 115-118,123-126,134,168.

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13. S. Harper, Timing the bedrock of anticipatory management, business horizons, (2000):p75 14. Herbert. A Simon, The new science of management decision, harper and bow, (1960):pp5-6 15. Weston. H, Agor, the logistic of intuition: how top executives make important decisions, organizational dynamics, 14, (1986), pp5-18 16. Herbert A. Simon, Making management decisions: the role of intuition and
emotion academy of management executive, (1987):pp57-64 17. James. G. March and Herbert A. Simon, Organization, wiley (1958):pp22 18. http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/decision-making.htmldecisionmaking 19. http://www.mftrou.com/decision-making-tool.htm.

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  • University/College:
    University of California

  • Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter

  • Words: 2619

  • Pages: 10

Decision Making

Managers run organizations by the decisions they make on a daily basis. The quality of these decisions, to a smaller or greater degree, impacts the success or failure of an organization. Managers encounter challenges and opportunities every day. Some situations require actions that are very straightforward; others, not so simple. Some decisions need to be made right away, while others take a long period of time to be made. Decision making can be challenging, and it’s important we understand why.

In this paper, we will cover the main characteristics of managerial decisions, the stages of decision making, and the tools a manager has to achieve efficient decision making in a challenging and uncertain work environment. Characteristics of Managerial Decisions Structure: For most routine decisions, there is a determined procedure, or structure, that helps managers solve a problem. If it’s a routine problem, then they have standard responses. In these situations, managers only have to implement previously stated solutions, from past experiences in the organization. Unfortunately, not all decisions are programmed.

New problems arise all the time in an organization, and that’s when managers have to get creative to solve them. Past experience helps, so does intuition, but the decision maker, in this case, has to create, or rely on a method for making the decision. In this case, there’s no standard response. Uncertainty and Risk: As Schermerhorn, Hunt, & Osborn (1994) point out, problem solving decisions in organizations are typically made under three different conditions or environments: certainty, risk, and uncertainty. When information is sufficient, and outcomes of decisions are predictable, you are working in an environment of certainty.

However, for most important decisions, uncertainty is to be expected. Uncertainty exists when a manager doesn’t have enough information to assign probabilities to the consequences of different possible decisions. A manager might have a good guess, or opinion, but doesn’t know for sure if something will or won’t happen. Whenever there’s uncertainty, and something to lose, then there’s risk. Risk isn’t a bad thing; it’s just the fact that comes with any managerial decision. Choosing one alternative over another can imply losing time, or money, so every decision entails risk. Managers have to be aware that with their decisions they manage risk.

With good planning and problem resolution, risk can be minimized and controlled. Contending Interests: J. Davids (2012) talks about decisions that affect people with contending interests. An example of this is a CFO who argues in favor of increasing long-term debt to finance a purchase. On the other hand, the CEO wants to minimize long-term debt and find the funds somewhere else. In another example, a marketing department wants more product lines to sell, the engineers want higher quality of products, and the production manager wants less variety of products to lower costs.

In these situations, it’s up to the decision maker to fashion a workable decision that reflects an appreciation of all these antagonizing point of views. If a key player’s perspective isn’t taken into consideration, and the manager pushes forward in the decision process, the outcomes will probably not satisfy the decision makers’ plans. There are different approaches to managing participation of multiple players that we’ll touch on a bit later. Stages of Decision Making Situation: The first step in the decision making process is knowing the situation. This means, recognizing a problematic situation that exists, and must be fixed.

This usually implies comparing things the way they are now, to what they should be. An example of this is comparing the actual expenses to the budgeted expenses. Another example is looking at this quarter’s sales, and comparing them to the previous quarter. The problem that needs to be solved is usually an opportunity that managers seek to take advantage of. Bowen, Lewicki, Hall, Hall (1997) present an interesting approach of looking at a problem. It’s a technique referred to as “framing” or “reframing”. There are four essential perspectives of organization and management theory that help us define a situation.

* Structural. This perspective deals with the activities, functions assignments, tasks and so forth. It’s basically who does what and who reports to whom. * Human. This point of view looks at issues of how people and organizations relate, how organizations satisfy people’s needs, provide meaningful work, productivity, and relationships in the organization. * Political. This frame of mind looks at the organization as a system with shifting bases of power, and conflicts between different groups fighting for limited resources. * Symbolic. The symbolic frame references the culture of the organization, made up by ceremonies, rites, stories, and so on.

When dealing with a problem difficult to resolve, the manager can look at it, and use these different vantage points. This will help see the problem from a new perspective, and define the situation with a different understanding, and meaning of the problem. Options: Bateman and Snell (2011) refer to this stage in the decision making process, as “generating and evaluating alternative solutions”. What they mean by this is, once the problem is defined, the manager, or decision maker, has to develop different courses of action aimed at solving the problem. Solutions might be found by using similar tactics used in previous problems.

Custom made solutions are the other option. These take creativity and probably more resources. This step is key in the decision making process. Many times managers don’t take the time to brainstorm and come up with alternatives. In a hypothetical situation where the decision maker is trying to improve the organization’s bottom line, there are many options. You can increase prices to improve margin, advertise your products’ quality to increase sales, drop prices to increase sales, open new service lines that will give you higher participation in the market, just to name a few.

The point is: it’s important for the manager to take his time and consider all the options. Once managers have different options, they have to evaluate them, and come up with the best one. The best way of evaluating the options is measuring the consequences of the different alternatives. Measures such as lower costs, higher market share, bigger bottom line, employee satisfaction, customer satisfaction, just to name a few. Ethical aspects of decision making should also be considered in this step. Richard Ritti and Steve Levy (2010) combine what we previously mentioned about certainty, risk, and uncertainty, with alternative decisions.

We can have an alternative solution that implies increasing production of a service line by 15%, but based on the uncertainty of the environment, we have a decrease in the demand by 20%. This, in retrospect would be a bad choice. What I mean by this is, not all results can be predicted with perfect precision. In an uncertain environment, what decision makers have to consider, is creating contingency plans. These are plans that will be implemented if the future develops differently than what expected. Choose: Once you’ve generated different options, and evaluated them, it’s time to choose which one is best.

The manager must have an assertive attitude, and not over think the decision. Once the decision maker has all the information he’s going to have, he just has to take the leap and make the decision. Bateman and Snell (2011) bring in a few interesting concepts to this decision making step. These steps are maximizing, satisficing, and optimizing. * Maximizing: Maximize means, to make the most out of something, in this case, the decision. Maximizing requires looking carefully for a complete variety of alternatives, evaluating them, and then choosing the best. Maximizing is the better strategy for important decisions.

Managers that are maximizers, plan systematically in solving problems, and their high expectations of quality drives them to achieve great results. * Satisficing: Satisficing is choosing the first satisfactory option, rather than looking for the optimal decision alternative. This concept was originally referred to by Herbert Simon (1947). He stated: “Most human decision making, whether individual or organizational, is concerned with the discovery and selection of satisfactory alternatives; only in exceptional cases is it concerned with the discovery and selection of optimal decisions. When managers make decisions, many times they are facing limitations, such as time barriers, unavailability of information, and other situations that make finding the optimal option impossible. When the decision isn’t of great importance, satisficing could be the optimal approach. * Optimizing: Managers have to balance their decisions. Since there are contending interests in many of the important decisions in the organization, managers have to find an alternative that meets multiple criteria, and achieves the organization’s goals.

Act: Once the problem has been recognized, alternatives generated and evaluated, and the choice has been made, someone has to act. Also known as the implementation process, managers have to plan it vigilantly. Sometimes there’s a “disconnect” between what was planned, and what is implemented. The people involved in the process assume things are just magically going to occur. This isn’t the case, so it’s up to the manager to ensure things are taking shape. Good communication is essential in this implementation process, especially since this is when all the change happens.

People aren’t naturally comfortable with change, so the manager has to be clear with the steps that have to take place. The manager must manage the chronological order in which things have to happen and delegate the individuals responsible for each task. He must ensure everyone understands their role, and knows what the final outcome should look like. The buy-in from the different players in the organization, when implementing decisions that cause change, will dictate the outcome of the implementation stage.

If needs were ignored when making the decision, or if the paths of communication haven’t been fluid in the process, it will be very hard to implement change effectively. The manager must take these things into consideration if he wants to avoid potential problems that arise in this step of the process. Evaluate: Evaluating the decision is the last step in the decision making process. It’s time for the results to determine whether the manager’s choice is having the effect it was intended to have. For this stage to be successful, there has to be measurable results; they must be quantifiable.

For an adequate evaluation of the decision, a validating mechanism collects information and compares it to an expected value. That validating mechanism can be set and developed even before the solution to the problem is determined. If the decision made proves to be effective, and the results show that the goals were met, then this decision could serve another purpose elsewhere in the organization. The positive feedback will be welcomed by the manager, and reinforce the decision making process. If the results demonstrate negative results, then it’ll take some good analysis to see where things have gone wrong.

Things might have gone wrong in any of the previous stages. It’ll take brainstorming, and effort to assess what things need to happen to put things on the right track. Participation in Decision Making As Bowen et al. (1997) point out, most changes in organizations not only require technical modifications, but alterations in the work and social satisfactions of the employees. This makes the challenge of implementing change even greater. It’s not only important that the new methods are efficient; they must also be accepted by the employees who will be implementing these changes.

In this context, managing the participation of the employees in making a decision plays an important role. There are different approaches when making decisions that involve change. They can be grouped into different variants of authoritative decisions, mutual problem solving, and consultative decisions. In the authoritative decision alternative, the manager makes the decision alone. Then he puts together arguments and rational information to show the employees the advantages of change. In the mutual problem solving approach, the manager shares the problem with his employees, and the group works together to come up with a final decision.

The consultative approach is a middle ground; the manager shares the problem with the group, obtains ideas and suggestions, and then makes a decision that may or may not reflect the employee’s contribution. There are advantages and disadvantages in making group decisions. The biggest one is that the acceptance of participants is high, mainly because they’ve had an opportunity to give their opinion. They feel like they’ve had a say in the new process, so they’ll naturally support it. It’s also a huge advantage in the implementation stage, because the employees understand what management is trying to achieve.

Many times the subordinates bring knowledge and experience that even the manager might not have. It’s the employees who work in the details, and they might have good input in solving problems. One of the disadvantages of group decision making is the time it takes. A lot of time can be wasted meeting in groups to come up with good ideas. Another negative aspect is that groups tend to make riskier decisions because the responsibility doesn’t fall on just one person. In the same sense, group embers might not put that much effort into thinking of all the ramifications of their decisions, because they think someone else is probably thinking of that already.

The main takeaway from participation in decision making is that it really depends on the situation, and the problem being solved. The challenge for the manager is to know when he should employ each of the decision making approaches according to the situation. A smart manager will know how to use these managing tools to make decisions that are not only efficient, but will also have the support and buy-in from the employees.

Conclusion A good manager will assess each situation and find opportunities where change can be made; always looking for the organization’s best interest. When making important decisions, the manager will see the type of environment he’s in, if there’s certainty or not, and always account for the contending interests his decisions will undoubtedly face. A wise decision maker will recognize a situation that requires an intervention on his behalf. He will generate and evaluate different options, and apply the concepts of maximizing, satisficing, and optimizing to make the best decision.

Not only does the manager choose; he acts. He takes responsibility and accountability for his choices, and makes sure there’s follow through in the implementation stage of the process. The decision maker will then evaluate the results, to validate that his decisions are having the results that were intended. If not, he’ll go back to the drawing board. Organizations live and die by the decisions made by managers, and to the extent that they can define problems, and make smart choices. Good decision making is found at the heart of all successful businesses.

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  • University/College:
    University of Arkansas System

  • Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter

  • Words: 327

  • Pages: 1

Decision Making

When you are making a decision there are six steps you want to follow they are; identifying and diagnosing the problem, generating alternative solutions, evaluating alternatives, making the choice, implementing the decision, and evaluating the decision. There are times in our lives when we have to make important decisions such as changing jobs, moving to a new state, buying a new house or going to school. For me this decision came a little over a year ago when I decided to go back to school and further my education.

The first step of my decision making process was to identify the problem. I have been working at the same job for six years with no chance of advancement. I just had my first child and when my leave was up, I didn’t want to go back to the same job that I hated.

Next, I had to look at all of my options. Yes, I could have gone out and got another job, but really how far can you go with just a high school diploma. I wanted to be able to go out and make a difference and do something that I love doing.

Last, with my husband’s support I made the choice to go back to school. And I have to say it has been the best decision I have ever made. I will be done with my associate’s degree in August then I am starting my bachelor’s degree. This will not only help me but my family too.

Even though my situation is somewhat different from the one in the text, we both made the decision to better ourselves. She had to cut cost and repay the company’s debt. This made Xerox survive and is now a thriving business.

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  • University/College:
    University of California

  • Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter

  • Words: 379

  • Pages: 2

Decision Making

1.What issues would you take into account?

The stakeholders welfare, responsibility towards the society (in this case it can be identified as United States or as broad as the global inhabitants) which includes environmental issues, and also the ethics. For sure one more important issue is profitability or survivability of the firm. All of the issues mentioned earlier may be thought of as means for ensuring the long-run success of the company.

2.What major sources of uncertainty do you face?

The major sources of uncertainty include research and development, and market analysis. “Will the substitute product work and would it be working the same?” “Is the ozone problem really directly related to Chlorofluorocarbons, or a normal cycle has actually caused these observed recent changes?” Finally, “could Du Pont’s efforts really have an effect, and how much?” “Is this effect going to bring any profit for the company?” and as a market analysis viewpoint, “will the market and society accept them?”

3.What corporate objectives would be important for you to consider? Do you think that DuPont’s objectives and the way the company views the problem might have evolved since the mid-70s when CFCs were just beginning to become an issue?

DuPont’s views of the situation Of course have changed over time. Early on, the chlorofluorocarbon issue was basically ignored. DuPont was the largest CFC producer in the world with a 25% market share in the 1980s.This product was a less hazardous alternative to the sulfur dioxide and ammonia and was widely used as refrigerants in refrigeration, ACs, and medical inhalers for asthma patients. In March 15, 1988 NASA announced that CFCs were not only creating a hole in the ozone layer above Antarctica, but also thinning the layer elsewhere in the world. After NASA announcement, DuPont announced that it would begin to phase out the CFCs. It invested more than $500 million in this case and commercialized a family of refrigerants with zero or lower ozone depletion effects in January 1991 for the first time.

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  • University/College:
    University of Arkansas System

  • Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter

  • Words: 530

  • Pages: 2

Decision making

The first skill set is learning how to use the four primary ethical perspectives that are used in decision making. These perspectives are called the Four Ethical Lenses. The second skill is learning to use a practical and repeatable decision-making method called the Baird Decision Model. As we become adults, one of our primary responsibilities is to decide what values and ethical priorities are the most important to us. The ethical game simulation assist with that. Mysterious Blogger and Unveiled I. D. The ethical issues that were addressed in these simulations were religion and violation of company policies.

In the mysterious blogger simulation an employee hacked another employee’s personal PC only to find that the other employee was blogging about the company. Which was in violation of the company’s policy. In the unveiled I. D simulation an employee, which is a woman has issues taking a photo for an ID because it is against her religion to show her face unless amongst other women only. The decisions making steps I took to resolve these dilemmas was the being reasonable lens trying to consider what is good, fair, true, and virtuous. I also used the responsible lens trying to make an ethical choice based on my analysis.

The ethical perspectives that influenced my decision making was Being Attentive: Collect the facts and notice what’s being said. Being Intelligent: Find the underlying issue and determine who’s really involved. Being Reasonable: Use the lenses to consider what is good, what is true, what is fair, and what is virtuous. Being Responsible: Make an ethical choice based on your analysis. Being Reflective: Defend your choice with careful thought and observe the aftermath closely. The way these ethical perspectives influenced my decisions was through personal and community values.

Trying to understand and asses the situations, while also being fair and unbiased, so that all can feel addressed and handled in the correct manner. The way concepts from the simulation relate to the workplace is very simple and straight forward. The concepts helps one to understand the situation by analyzing and placing it in a particular lens. By doing this one has a better grasp on how to handle and resolve the issues that may take place. When in the workplace there are different races, genders and religions and these simulations touch base on in-depth issues that has definitely arose in the business environment.

Having a clear process in place for evaluating exceptions ensures that all are treated equally, including the least advantaged. Conclusion With time and practice, the conflicts inherent in moral dilemmas can become opportunities for developing your ethical self. When you come across difference, remember that we all have our chosen lens. “Arguments over the “right thing to do” often stem from differing definitions of what actions are ethical” (ethicsgame. 2013). Knowing your ethical lens and how it effects ones decision making only enhances an individual’s work ethic, morals and decision making in one’s personal life.

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  • University/College:
    University of Chicago

  • Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter

  • Words: 5326

  • Pages: 21

Decision making

Preface The intended readership of this volume is the full range of behavioral scientists, mental health professionals, and students aspiring to such roles who work with children. This includes psychologists (applied, clinical, counseling, developmental, school, including academics, researchers, and practitioners), family counselors, psychiatrists, social workers, psychiatric nurses, child protection workers, and any other mental health professionals who work with children, adolescents, and their families. Working with children is both rewarding and demanding.

The work is fraught with more acceptance of responsibility, confusions, intrusions, and potential ambiguity among the various players in the system than with any other clinical population. Although unfortunate, it is perhaps no wonder that many mental health professionals attempt to avoid working with children altogether, often citing concern about potential legal and ethical dilemmas. It is not that such professionals dislike or are unsympathetic towards children. Rather, they are concerned about what people who are legally defined as minors bring along, and not usually by their own choice, into a professional relationship.

Those who work with children cannot always count on dealing with loving and cooperative parents who will make appropriate sacrifices for their children or give mental health professionals appropriate latitude to do their work according to their own best judgment. Professionals cannot rely on local, state, or federal laws and policies related to children to say ¦ This original manuscript was published by the University of Nebraska Press, but is currently out of print. The un-copy-edited raw manuscript is made available to students and scholars in this form at no charge.

The authors retain all rights to the material. Please cite as: Koocher, G. P. & Keith-Spiegel, P. C. (1990). Children, Ethics, and the Law: Professional Issues and Cases. Lincoln, Nebraska: University of Nebraska Press. © Gerald P. Koocher and Patricia Keith-Spiegel, 1990, all rights reserved Preface ii what they mean in easily interpretable language or to never contradict or preempt each other. Nor can we assume that community agencies and the courts will provide prompt, highly competent, compassionate and well-orchestrated services.

We cannot even rely on our own professional associations to have ethics codes or other information that deliver clear guidance as to how a member of the profession should proceed in a given circumstance related to children. All of these factors combine with continuing disagreements about the meaning and desirability of increasing children’s rights to self-determination. Although there is a growing recognition of the autonomy of children and respect for their input to matters affecting them, there remains a general lack of consensus as to when and how children’s input should be considered, even in everyday matters.

Despite the risks and uncertainties that surround professional work with children, the need for such professionals is greater than ever before. Demand for such services in increasing, even as the number of individuals in training as child specialists declines. This book introduces the reader to a variety of ethical and legal dilemmas that may arise for mental health professionals in the course of their everyday work with children, adolescents, and their families.

Although we are not always able to offer a definitive action that will be successfully applicable in every similar instance, we aspire to give sound general advice, to aid the reader in identifying the key factors to take into account, and to help with the formulation of decision-making strategies. We have attempted to cover a broad spectrum of professional functions and work setting contexts such as counseling in the schools, psychotherapy in private practice, research in the university laboratory, and serving as an expert witness in court.

We also attempted to cover a wide range of ethical-legal dilemmas reflecting the peculiar twists that unavoidably occur when children are involved. These include special considerations related to confidentiality and record keeping, consent to treatment and research, and psychological assessment of children. It was, of course, impossible to cover every conceivable topic in a single volume, so no inference about the lesser importance of uncovered materials should be made. We make frequent use of case vignettes to illustrate the ethical and legal dilemmas under discussion.

Many of these incidents are based on ethics files of professional associations or public domain sources, usually litigated cases. The authors’ own consultation experiences provide another major source of case material. In instances where the sources are confidential, we have used a variety of techniques to disguise the incident and the identity of the actual people involved. Specific reference to actual persons living or dead is not intended. The use of bogus names in case material is meant to enhance readability of the text, and is in no way intended to trivialize the significance of the ethical issues involved.

Please cite as: Koocher, G. P. & Keith-Spiegel, P. C. (1990). Children, Ethics, and the Law: Professional Issues and Cases. Lincoln, Nebraska: University of Nebraska Press. © Gerald P. Koocher and Patricia Keith-Spiegel, 1990, all rights reserved Preface iii We are also grateful to our students and to the large number of colleagues (listed below) who contributed ethical dilemmas or problems to us via the ethics casebook project of the Section of Clinical Child Psychology (of APA’s Division of Clinical Psychology). David Hayes Kenneth D. Herman William F. Hodges Jane Irion Grace R. Kalfus Sophie L.

Lovinger Ramasamy Manikam Audrey Ricker Lois J. Rifner Michael C. Roberts Gloria M. Roque Lanning S. Schiller Audrey Sistler F. Beth Stone Elaine Sweeney, RSM June M. Tuma Margaret Witecki Deborah Young-Hyman Virginia Youngren Kristi Alexander Russell Bauer Frank H. Boring Emily Bronfman Debra Carmichael Robert Cornnoyer Sheila M. Eyberg Edward D. Farber Eileen Fennell Jacqueline Goldman S. J. McKenzie D. Louise Mebane Michael D. Miller Linda L. Reed Elizabeth C. Rickitt Peter Goldenthal Nancy Grace Linda J. Gudas The routine methods of designating the principals in disguised case materials (e. g. , “Dr. B.” or “the child”) were avoided in favor of contrived names.

We have found this technique useful in teaching and improving the readability of the text. We do not in any way intend to trivialize the importance of the issues at hand, yet we also wanted to assure that the names of our characters were unlikely to correspond to the names of real people. Any similarities which remain, despite our efforts, are purely coincidental and in no instance resemble the actual names of the principals. The exception to this rule is that when citing public domain cases we use the real names of the parties and cite the relevant case law or public source.

As a convenience to readers, we have also included a glossary of important cases described in this volume. Finally, we wish to extend our special thanks to our colleagues Gary B. Melton and Dee Shepard for their thoughtful review of the manuscript and detailed suggestions for improving it. The manuscript is significantly improved as a result of their efforts. Please cite as: Koocher, G. P. & Keith-Spiegel, P. C. (1990). Children, Ethics, and the Law: Professional Issues and Cases. Lincoln, Nebraska: University of Nebraska Press. © Gerald P. Koocher and Patricia Keith-Spiegel, 1990, all rights reserved.

Chapter 1 1 CHAPTER 1 Introduction and Basic Concepts The Law versus Ethics: Rambo Meets Bambi Most movie goers will have little difficulty grasping the contrasts between Rambo and Bambi. The cinematic analogy provides a context for quickly absorbing some of the important differences between legal and ethical standards as applied to psychological interventions with children and families. These differences chiefly include the origins, purposes, and manner of enforcement of the standards. Before addressing these in detail, the reader without much legal background will need some contextual information.

Legal standards addressed to family issues often originate in common law, which has its roots in legal traditions inherited from America’s early European ancestry. Common law generally refers to legal principles which derive from sources other than formal legislative enactment. The second cluster of legal standards most commonly encountered by mental health professionals are statutory law and case law. Statutes are those laws enacted by legislative bodies at the local, state, or federal level, and case law refers to precedent-setting decisions handed down by courts.

Finally, one occasionally encounters administrative laws which bear on family functioning. These are often termed regulations and originate in the executive branch of government, as opposed to legislative or judicial branches, and usually deal with policy implementation (e. g. , rules governing the treatment of participants in research using federal funds or rules governing administration of the social security benefits system). Federal regulations are published in the Federal Register, while state regulations are usually available through the various Secretary of State offices.

Ethical codes generally refer to basic philosophical notions and professional norms about the morality of human conduct (Weithorn & McCabe, 1987). Such codes are often promulgated by professional organizations (e. g. , the American Psychological Association, American Psychiatric Association, and the Society for Research in Child Development). In addition, groups charged with policy-making (e. g. , the President’s Commission for the Study of Ethical Problems in Medicine and Biomedical and Behavioral Research) also occasionally undertake explication of ethical guidelines.

Beauchamp and Childress (1983) have underscored key principles which guide codes of ethics. These include: autonomy (i. e. , respect for the right of self-determination), beneficence (i. e. , the obligation of members of the profession to help others), confidentiality (i. e. , preventing disclosure of information received in the context of a professional relationship), fidelity (i. e. , keeping one’s promises), justice (i. e. , offering fair and equal treatment to all), nonmaleficience (i. e. , the obligation to “do no harm”), privacy (i. e. , respecting people’s personal decisions about when and what information to provide about themselves), and veracity (i. e. , truthfulness). Please cite as: Koocher, G. P. & Keith-Spiegel, P. C. (1990).

Children, Ethics, and the Law: Professional Issues and Cases. Lincoln, Nebraska: University of Nebraska Press. © Gerald P. Koocher and Patricia Keith-Spiegel, 1990, all rights reserved Chapter 1 2 The value of professional associations’ ethics codes as applied to everyday practice is limited. Except for the code of the Society for Research in Child Development (SRCD), which is focused on children, professional association ethics codes say little or nothing about kids.

In addition, the SRCD ethics code is now so outdated that parts of it actually conflict with some federal regulations on the protection of children in research projects. Many groups with ethics codes, including SRCD, have no monitoring or enforcement capability (e. g. , ethics committees with investigatory and disciplinary authority). In these instances, the ethics codes are essentially educational and consciousness-raising documents for the members of the organization or statements for public relations purposes. Thus, some groups with ethics codes ignore the special interests and needs of children while others are totally toothless.

Most professional groups with a focus on children have no written ethics code at all. Although morals and laws often have the same goals and suggest similar underlying social values, the vigor with which they are enforced and the adequacy of the protection they afford society is highly variable. Despite its failings, government through the legal system has a complex array of personnel and procedures available to enforce laws (e. g. , Rambo, the well-armed enforcer) by comparison with the more limited and relatively toothless resources available to those who attempt to enforce professional ethical codes (e.g. , Bambi, being guided chiefly by conscience or fear of embarrassment).

Although ethical codes may well be enforced on members of professional organizations, the ultimate sanction available is generally limited to expulsion from the group. This is not an entirely benign sanction, since it may include dissemination of the “guilty” finding to licensing boards and members of professional associations (Keith-Spiegel & Koocher, 1985). In addition, such findings can lead to termination of professional liability (i. e. , malpractice) insurance coverage.

Clouser (1973) noted that, despite the apparent overlap, morality is external to law, and laws frequently deal with matters that are not moral concerns at all. Likewise, many matters of morality or ethics cannot be sanctioned by law because of inconvenience or the impossibility of enforcement. Frequently, a lack of congruence exists between what is legal and what is considered ethical in terms of professional standards. For example, a psychologist who is convicted of shoplifting has broken the law, but may still be an ethical practitioner of her/his profession.

Likewise, a practitioner may behave in ways which are unethical or potentially harmful to clients, while at the same time violating no actual statutes. The following case is illustrative. Case 1-1: It is not unusual for Brian Brash, Ph. D. to invite discussions of specific problems on his radio call-in show, “The Children’s Hour with Dr. Brian Brash, Child Psychologist. ” A parent called in and described her eight-year-old child’s behavior, including: temper tantrums, argumentativeness, constant challenges to parental authority, and refusal to respond to requests that he clean up his room.

In Please cite as: Koocher, G. P. & Keith-Spiegel, P. C. (1990). Children, Ethics, and the Law: Professional Issues and Cases. Lincoln, Nebraska: University of Nebraska Press. © Gerald P. Koocher and Patricia Keith-Spiegel, 1990, all rights reserved Chapter 1 3 response Dr. Brash stated that a diagnosis of “oppositional disorder of childhood” seemed likely. In this case no law is violated, although the APA ethics code (1981, Principle 4k) admonishes psychologists to refrain from offering a diagnosis in a context other than a traditional professional relationship.

When working with children in clinical, institutional, or research, settings the distinctions between legal and ethical obligations become even more complex. Society’s laws are generally framed with adults in mind. As such, the law often treats children as “exceptions to the rule,” which may be either beneficial or insidious depending on the precise context. The purpose of this volume is to highlight and discuss the special ethical and legal considerations required when studying children and their families or when delivering psychological services to them.

To use the analogy with which we began this chapter, this volume is generally focused on educating Bambi rather than calling in Rambo. Legal Background Historical Considerations Children have long been treated by the courts as valuable property of their parents. In many societies, children have represented a means of establishing a labor force or to provide parental support during old age. In our own legal system, parents have been held to possess a “right of control” over their children (Meyer v. Nebraska, 1923; Pierce v.Society of Sisters, 1925)1.

Although parents’ rights of control over their children are limited by a prohibition against making “martyrs of their children,” (Prince v. Massachusetts, 1944, p. 170). This restriction was advanced not because of an enlightened view of children’s rights, but rather as an assertion of society’s interest in the socialization of children. It was actually not clear until the mid 1960s that children were deemed “persons” within the meaning of the Fourteenth Amendment which applies the Bill of Rights to all of the states.

Under common law, children up to the age of seven were considered doli incapax (i. e. , the defense of infancy) and therefore could not be held responsible for their actions. Older children under the age of majority were also considered incompetent unless the state could prove them doli capax (Melton, 1983a, 1983b). Although one can easily question the validity of this doctrine and the age levels used, such questions were irrelevant in this capacity until the Supreme Court’s decision in the case In re Gault (1967).

Prior to that decision juvenile courts were deemed to be acting in the best interests of the children before them under the doctrine of parens patriae (i. e. , the principle of the state performing parental functions for those deemed 1 Brief summaries of these and other important cases cited in this volume appear in the case glossary. Please cite as: Koocher, G. P. & Keith-Spiegel, P. C. (1990). Children, Ethics, and the Law: Professional Issues and Cases. Lincoln, Nebraska: University of Nebraska Press. © Gerald P. Koocher and Patricia Keith-Spiegel, 1990, all rights reserved.

Chapter 1 4 incompetent under law). In the Gault decision, the Supreme Court concluded that, “neither the Fourteenth Amendment nor the Bill of Rights is for adults alone” (p. 28). This decision and others that followed combined with the increasing recognition of the prevalence of social problems such as child neglect and abuse, runaway youth, and changing child custody practices contribute to an increasing involvement of children in the legal system. Similarly, the involvement and roles of mental health professionals who work with children have changed.

We are increasingly called upon to advise or testify on such matters, and in so doing expose ourselves to new duties and responsibilities with special obligations for which we may not be fully prepared. Children’s Ability to Make Competent Decisions Much of this volume will revolve around questions of decision-making by and for children. The ability of children to make well-informed decisions about their lives and their exercise of that ability, directly or through proxies, is a core issue which cuts across many ethical problems.

The law, society, and many mental health professionals generally presume that children are not able to make major life decisions on their own. This presumption is often correct, and the rules that exist to deny children independent decision-making authority generally serve to protect them in the long run. At the same time, the relative dependency, vulnerability, and immaturity of children often interact with complex family roles to create complicated conflicts of interest.

By the nature of their work, human service professionals frequently encounter such conflicts in work with families, and ethical dilemmas often result. Assessment of specific competency (in the case of children) or incompetency (in the case of adults) revolves around four basic elements (Leikin, 1983; Weithorn, 1983a; Weithorn & Campbell, 1982). These include: 1. the person’s ability to understand information that is offered about the nature and potential consequences of the decision to be made; 2. the ability to manifest a decision;

3.the manner in which the decision is made; and 4. the nature of the resulting decision. These elements involve psychological aspects of comprehension, assertiveness and autonomy, rational reasoning, anticipation of future events, and judgments in the face of uncertainty or contingencies. In the following pages, relevant developmental trends will be discussed in relationship to these basic elements of competency. The points discussed here represent an overview of the various approaches to determining competence.

The matter of whether any single circumstance represents a valid exercise of competence is obviously linked closely to context and subjective interpretation. Please cite as: Koocher, G. P. & Keith-Spiegel, P. C. (1990). Children, Ethics, and the Law: Professional Issues and Cases. Lincoln, Nebraska: University of Nebraska Press. © Gerald P. Koocher and Patricia Keith-Spiegel, 1990, all rights reserved Chapter 1 5 There are five key elements in fully informed decision-making.

These include: information, understanding, competency, voluntariness, and decision-making ability (i.e. , reasoning). In this context information refers to access to all data which might reasonably be expected to influence a person’s willingness to participate. Information includes only what is offered or made available to the person. Competency includes the capacity to understand, the ability to weigh potential outcomes, and also the foresight to anticipate the future consequences of the decision. Voluntariness is the freedom to choose to participate or to refuse.

Decisionmaking ability refers to the ability to render a reasoned choice and express it clearly (Lidz,Meisel, Zerubavel, Carter, Sestak, & Roth, 1984). Although the concepts of competency and informed consent are different, it is clear that there are many overlapping elements. Competency is a prerequisite for informed consent. An offer to provide a person with informed consent is simply not meaningful unless the individual in question is fully competent to make use of it. Across the developmental trajectory between infancy and adulthood, there are many aspects of human development which act to inhibit or enhance competency and the ability to give consent. How are Children Special in This Regard?

Socialization It is no secret that we begin life as egocentric beings, largely unaware of our own capabilities and without verbally based interpersonal relationships. We progress through developmental stages which involve a focus on interaction in the family, peer group, and ultimately in society as a whole. Along the way we are “socialized” or taught about various interpersonal and societal roles by our parents and social institutions (chiefly our schools). As children, we are taught to do what older and bigger people (i. e. , authority figures) tell us.

There is a substantial body of data to suggest that even after children become capable of understanding that they have certain rights or societal entitlements, their exercise or assertions of those rights is often a function of their social ecology (Melton, Koocher, & Saks, 1983). Many children literally regard their rights as those entitlements that adults permit them to exercise (Melton, 1980, 1983c). Although a parent may say to a child, “Please pick up your toys,” children as young as three are well aware that adverse consequences will follow a failure to respond.

Adults’ interactions with children are often framed as requests, yet children are seldom fooled into thinking that they have a real option to decline. The “terrible twos” and “rebellious adolescent years” are well known societal concepts which present the adult perspective that it is difficult to deal with children who challenge or question authority. The point to be made here is that the process of socialization presents considerable pressure for children to conform or acquiesce to adults’ wishes.

As a result of these pressures, it is quite likely that offers to exercise various rights will not be recognized or acted Please cite as: Koocher, G. P. & Keith-Spiegel, P. C. (1990). Children, Ethics, and the Law: Professional Issues and Cases. Lincoln, Nebraska: University of Nebraska Press. © Gerald P. Koocher and Patricia Keith-Spiegel, 1990, all rights reserved Chapter 1 6 on by many children. Likewise, oppositional responses may sometimes occur more as a function of developmental stage than reasoned choice.

Time Perspective “Do you want a little candy bar today, or a big one next week? ” To the young child for whom next week may seem a decade away, immediate gratification is the obvious choice. Psychologists have conducted a considerable amount of research investigating children’s time perspective including a now classic body of social learning theory (Mischel, 1971). The ability to go beyond the present and conceptualize the future, including hypothetical or potential outcomes, is closely linked to stages of cognitive development.

We must be mindful of this when asking children to participate in decisions or to give consent involving long-term consequences of future outcomes. Time perspective becomes critically important whenever a decision involves being able to weigh its short- versus long-term consequences. It is also an important consideration when developmental level predisposes a child to choose immediate gratification while ignoring or failing to weigh her longer-term best interests.

The impact of developmental level has been especially well documented as an issue in health-related decision making, both with respect to pregnancy decisions (C.C. Lewis, 1981) and more general health attitudes (Roberts, Maddux, & Wright, 1984; Jessor, 1984).

The classic paradigm, of course, is the adult patient facing major surgery who says, “Well doc, what are the odds? ” The ability to weigh probabilities and to make some kind of long-term cost-benefit analysis is crucial to an informed decision. Concept Manipulation The ability to manipulate concepts using a developmental model of consent has been well described in a previous volume (Melton, Koocher,& Saks, 1983), as well as in many subsequent studies (e.g. , Belter & Grisso, 1984).

Considering the Piagetian model in simplistic form, for example, one can examine the basic reasoning shifts which occur between pre-operational, concrete-operational, and formal-operational stages (Phillips,1975). In the pre-operational stage, children are limited to their own experiences as a primary data base for decision-making. Fantasy and magical thinking are also very powerful at this stage and may carry equal weight with more valid or reality-based data in a child’s reasoning.

While such children are very interested in their environment and interpersonal relations, their perspective is self-centered. Their understanding of other’s behavior and their own experiences are interpreted chiefly in terms of how these happenings affect them personally. When they ask questions or observe events happening to others, such children interpret the events chiefly via projection and identification. During the concrete-operational stage the child for the first time becomes capable of truly taking the perspective of another person and using that data in decision-making.

While Please cite as: Koocher, G. P. & Keith-Spiegel, P. C. (1990). Children, Ethics, and the Law: Professional Issues and Cases. Lincoln, Nebraska: University of Nebraska Press. © Gerald P. Koocher and Patricia Keith-Spiegel, 1990, all rights reserved Chapter 1 7 observational learning and asking questions are obvious in much younger children, the concrete-operational child is able to integrate and reason with these data in a more logical and effective manner than was possible at an earlier developmental level.

In addition, this is the stage at which children first become able to explore their motivation from the standpoint of another person (Phillips,1975). With the arrival of formal-operations the child becomes able to use hypothetical reasoning. The way things are now is recognized as a subset of the way things might be for the first time. Cause and effect reasoning becomes generalized in a manner which permits the child to extrapolate and theorize about future events and outcomes.

Likewise the ability to understand contingencies and consider probabilities (e.g. , “There is a fifty percent chance that you will get well without treatment… “) will generally require the cognitive talents which do not arrive prior to formal-operational thought. Such thinking is obviously critical if a child is to make a decision regarding his or her long-term best interests. Consent, Permission, and Assent Among those writing on the interaction of developmental stages with competence to consent, a clear distinction is often made among the terms “consent,” “permission,” and “assent.

” To give consent, a person should be able to understand the facts and consequences relative to a decision and manifest that decision voluntarily. We usually like to see the adjective “informed” precede consent, implying that all of the data needed to reach a reasoned decision have been offered in a manner that can and has been understood. Often the person must meet a legal age requirement, typically age 18, in order for the decision to be considered valid or binding More and more often, consent is being defined as a decision that one can make only for oneself.

Thus, the term “proxy consent” is decreasingly used in favor of the term “permission. ” Parents are usually those from whom permission must be sought as both a legal and ethical requirement prior to intervening in the lives of their minor children. Assent, a relatively new concept in this context, recognizes that minors may not, as a function of their developmental level, be capable of giving fully reasoned consent but may still be capable of reaching and expressing a preference.

Assent recognizes the involvement of the child in the decision-making process, while also indicating that the child’s level of participation is less than fully competent. Granting assent power is essentially the same as providing a veto power. What can be done to respect the rights of a child or other “incompetent” when the consequences of a poorly exercised veto could be disastrous to the individual in question? This is often the case when some high-risk medical procedure offers the only hope of long term survival or when the person in question is pre-verbal, mute on the matter, or comatose.

In such situations, a substitute or proxy is needed. Please cite as: Koocher, G. P. & Keith-Spiegel, P. C. (1990). Children, Ethics, and the Law: Professional Issues and Cases. Lincoln, Nebraska: University of Nebraska Press. © Gerald P. Koocher and Patricia Keith-Spiegel, 1990, all rights reserved Chapter 1 8 The degree to which children ought to be permitted to make binding decisions on matters involving their own welfare is a matter of much controversy (Wadlington, 1983).

The point of this volume is not to argue a position so much as to clarify the issues with respect to the psychological capacities of children to make such decisions and the ethical obligations of professionals who work with them. Although the law has seldom been guided by psychological principles, a growing body of psychological studies are shedding new light on how children’s decision-making capacities, as a function of development, interact with legal concepts. Mental health professionals are increasingly being asked to come into court as experts with respect to children’s needs and capacities.

With this expanded visibility, comes added risk. Those who do come forward as experts are more likely to be held accountable for their professional behavior. Unfortunately, ethical guidelines which apply particularly to work with children and families are all too rare. Use of the term “competence” as a legal concept in this chapter is no accident. In many ways the concept of competence provides a paradigm for the manner in which the legal system deals with children.

Adults are presumed competent, and children (i.e. , minors) are presumed incompetent in virtually all legal contexts. Although children may be “heard” on behalf of themselves or may be treated as adults in a variety of special circumstances, these situations are generally preceded by a qualifying process. Some examples of statutory and common law exemptions are discussed below. At times the basic elements of the process may be quite specific under statute, as in the matter of whether or not a juvenile defendant is to be tried as an adult.

On most occasions, however, the process by which a minor is deemed competent for any given purpose is open to determination by the broadest judgment of the court. The process of determination of competence and the reasoning applied vary widely as a function of both the case context and the willingness of the court to consider psychological input. In at least one context (i. e, decisions about admitting a minor to a psychiatric facility for inpatient treatment), the Supreme Court gave approval to considering a mental health professional as an administ.

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Decision making Essay

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  • University/College:
    University of Chicago

  • Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter

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Decision making

Overview My experience in the business world has shown a variety of ethical decision making practices. The beauty industry has a somewhat skewed view of ethics as it appeals to the vanity and esteem of consumers around the world. The health care industry must provide health care to its customers yet maintain the business with the goals of making a profit. Yale University is known for its research in the fields of science and medical technology. All these companies practice ethics, but view ethical behavior in a different way.

This paper will explore the definition and principles of ethics and discuss the impact of ethics on the decision making process in the work place. Definition Pearson Custom Publishing (Pearson, 1998-2002) defines ethics as the “standards of conduct and moral judgment. ” Markula Center for Applied Ethics (1995-1998) defines ethics as those standards that compel one to refrain from committing crimes against another person such as stealing, murder, assault, slander, and fraud. It is also the standards that encourage honesty, integrity, compassion and loyalty.

Ethics is not a religious principle, nor is it based on “feelings” about a particular problem. It cannot be defined as a legal practice because laws are created to protect rights, not manage ethical principles. While the definition may seem clear, ethics as a practice is somewhat ambiguous since interpretation plays a big part in how people perceive right from wrong. The Markala Center for Applied Ethics (1995-1998) states that in order to understand the meaning of ethics we must find answers the following questions, “According to what standards are these actions right or wrong?

What character traits (like honesty, compassion, fairness) are necessary to live a truly human life? ” Defining ethics is relatively easy compared to practicing ethics in the work place. Since the primary concern of most businesses is the bottom line, the ethical views may differ based on the type of business. Ethical views of employees may also differ from the views of the company. This can cause conflict among workers and management as companies strive to improve the bottom line. Personal ethics may be compromised in an effort to keep a job. In business, what are the ground rules?

Since ethics is not an exact science it is easy believe that if it is legal it is ethical and therefore acceptable. This is not always the case and recent examples of Enron and Microsoft prove this point. Enron has shown us that greed can interfere with good judgment and the impact of their decisions was grave. Microsoft is another company whose ethics have been questioned as it strives to maintain its place as the software giant. Is it unethical for Microsoft to work towards the demise of its competitor Netscape? Or is this the normal competitive spirit.

Another good example is the beauty industry that built a billion dollar business convincing consumers that cosmetics and perfumes will make them perform better, become more powerful and/or more popular if the products are used. Is this behavior legal, yes. Ethical, well, that is questionable and based on personal interpretation.

So how can ethical behavior be judged? Markala Center for Applied Ethics (1999) provides the following questions to help us more clearly ascertain ethical behavior. “Is there something wrong personally, interpersonally, or socially? Is there conflict that could be damaging to people?to animals or the environment? to institutions? to society?

Does the issue go deeper than legal or institutional concerns? What does it do to people as persons who have dignity, rights, and hopes for a better life together? “ These questions will help us to get the facts necessary to understand the problem, but we also need to know the values. Markula Center for Applied Ethics (1995-1998) suggests asking these additional questions to further determine values; “Is the solution to this problem for the common good of the community? Does it violate any rights? Is it fair and non-discriminatory?

Will it benefit the majority of the people? ” So when a problem occurs that requires a solution, it is necessary to review these questions and ask ourselves, based on a desired approach, if the outcome is ethical. This can be a difficult decision since often there is clearly no right or wrong answer. How could ethics benefit the decision making process? Incorporating ethics in the decision making process could making the process easier or more difficult. Easier by providing an additional layer that would justify a difficult decision based on whether it was ethically right or wrong.

Ethics could make the decision making process easier by helping to eliminate choices that would not benefit all parties involved. For instance, let’s say there is a company who produces steel wires for construction projects. They need to build a larger factory in order to keep up with the demand. They are a fairly small operation, but complex in that they use dangerous chemicals in the finishing of their products. They have found a couple of locations which meet their needs; one in a location that is isolated a far from any residential areas, the other is located directly on a river that flows into a lake used for recreational purposes.

The first location is considerably cheaper and would add an additional 30 minutes to the current employees commute. The second is closer and less expensive. In making the decision on where to build, management must consider the ethical ramifications to the environment. If they were to build near the river there would be a chance of chemical run off that would pollute the river and ultimately the lake. The use of ethics in the decision making process would make it easier to eliminate this location as an option and help to justify the additional expense and commute.

Ethics could also make the decision making process harder by adding another layer of complexity to the problem. Take for instance, the issue of stem cell research. The research is performed on human embryos which some say is an unethical practice. Others say that using stem cells for research will make technological advances in medicine that cannot be achieved in other ways. These groups are opposed to the ban on federal funding for research that involved human embryo research (Coalition of Americans for Research Ethics). In the meantime, there are many diseases in which the cure points to more search in the area of stem cells.

This research could help to save lives, but it is being held up due to the ethical beliefs of opposing parties. How should ethics be used in business? Ethical decision making should be a method by which decisions are made for the good of all people. Ethics should provide a code of behavior that is used as a base for all decision making. They should provide specific guidelines that ensure that decisions are always made in the interest of helping or protecting the rights of people. Many professional groups had specific practices by which they are expected to adhere as stated by Larry Colero of the U. B.C.

Centre for Applied Ethics; “professional associations have codes of ethics that prescribe required behavior within the context of a professional practice such as medicine, law, accounting, or engineering. ” These types of associations lay the ground rules in the decision making process. What are the ethical implications of the decision? Ethical implications in the decision making process could have a positive and negative outcome. I do believe that if a decision is not made in an ethical manner, the outcome will be negative. Using ethical decision making will most likely provide a positive outcome.

Although it may not benefit the bottom line, it will surely benefit the community and the company long term. The negative implications come from situations where the decision is made without consideration for ethics. A sales person who is desperate to make quota for the quarter sells a product to the customer even though the customer does not need the product at this time. The customer may feel that the sales person does not have their best interest in heart and take their business elsewhere. Initially, the sales person benefited from an unethical decision, but in the long run, this type of decision making did not pay off.

From a positive perspective, if the sales person had used ethical decision making, his sales may have increased not only through this one particular customer, but also from referrals due to the excellent customer service he/she had provided. Initially, the numbers may not have been satisfactory, but the long term results might have overcome the initial down turn. Conclusion Utilizing the principles of ethics in the decision making process will help to ensure that decisions made are fair and respect the rights of those parties involved. Unfortunately, ethical decision making is only as morally sound as the person making the decision.

If the person making the decision is does not live by an ethical code, the decision will be swayed in the direction of that belief. Therefore, in order to make sound ethical decisions, decision makers must constantly evaluate their own beliefs and strive to live in an ethical manner. References Coalition of Americans for Research Ethics, (n. d. ), On human embryos and stem cell research: An appeal for legally and ethically responsible science and public policy. Retrieved from the World Wide Web: May 18, 2002 http://www. stemcellresearch. org/statement/statement.

htm Colero, L. , (n. d. ) A framework for universal principles of ethics. Retrieved from the World Wide Web. May 18, 2002 http://www. ethics. ubc. ca/papers/invited/colero. html Pearson Custom Publishing, (1999-2002) Ethics. Retrieved from the World Wide Web: May 15, 2002 http://www. pearsoncustom. com/link/humanities/philosophy/crithink/ethics. html Markula Center for Applied Ethics, (1995-1998) A framework for ethical decision making. Retrieved from the World Wide Web. May 15, 2002. http://www. scu. edu/SCU/Centers/Ethics/practicing/deci3sion/framework. html.

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Decision making Essay

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Decision making Essay
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  • University/College:
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  • Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter

  • Words: 1142

  • Pages: 5

Decision making

My personal ethics development has been a process and it has changed over the years from people influencing me and myself maturing. As a child, I was raised well by my mother who always taught me to do the right thing when no one was looking. She always made sure I respected my elders and had good manners. I went to a Catholic school when I was in grade school and high school. My family and I would go to church every Sunday and have dinner together every night. My family always taught me to have good values and morals, to be a part of the community in a productive way.

The people that raised me in my earlier life played a huge importance on the man I have become. At this point of my life ,I thought my compass was true north as we heard Mr. O’Rourke talk about in the video lecture. I had strong values at all times or at least I thought I did. As my life went on I realized that my compass was north ,but it wasn’t true north. I still had room to grow and become more mature in my decision-making. Sometimes it can be very hard to judge how ethic you are like a person because you are judging yourself.

I graduated high school and soon after that I decided that I was going to join the Army instead of going to college. I was 19 years old when I joined the United States Army and enlisted for four years. The minute I arrived to boot camp I was introduced to the seven Army values which are loyalty, duty, respect, selfless service, honor, integrity, and personal courage. We had to memorize these army values ,as well as The Soldiers Creed and Warrior ethos. The warrior ethos is, I will always place the mission first, I will never quit, I will never accept defeat, and I will never leave a fallen comrade.

Every morning we would stand information and have to repeat these creeds and Army values as a group. At the time ,I did not understand why it was suppose important memorize all these things. They would make us do team building exercises, where you would have to trust your fellow Soldiers. Then the next six years of my life will change how I looked at my moral decision making for the rest of my life. I went to Iraq when I was 20 for a 15-month tour and came back 22 years old. Within those six years ,I deployed to Iraq three deferent times for a total of 33 months.

While you are deployed in a war situation you will be faced with unethical decisions on a daily basis this is where you got to separate your religious and personal ethics with your jobs ethics. Sometimes you need to make a decision based on a duty-based principal, were right and wrong is determined by an outside source. You do things you don’t necessarily believe in ,but it’s for the better of the workplace, work or in this case for the Army. I look back to the days of basic training and throughout the nine years I have been in the Army and I realize why the Army puts so must stress on values.

We have classes all the time on ethics, decision-making and critical thinking. The Army prepares you for the hard decisions you are going to have to make with using sound judgment and values. All the training I received from the Army and them instilling values and standards in my brain helped me to always make ethical decisions in the most distraught instances. It helped me that I was raised with good ethics, morals, and values. It made the transition in the Army easier for myself than some of the other Soldiers.

The Army is a perfect example of just because you were raised with bad ethics or values do not mean that you will always live that way. People are brought in from all over the world and have to work with each other on a daily basis and trust each other. The Army will teach you how to have good ethics and values. I see people change all the time over the course of time. They will make you have a role model character once they make you believe in the values and ethics. I am not saying everyone will change or will be able to change but if a person truly wants to change they can change with strong leaders in place with good characters.

Ethics is crucial in the business world because there is so much room for corruption and misbehavior in the workplace. There is many chances to make unethical decisions in business that is why it is so important to have mandatory training and have people who believe in you work for you. Every company or business needs to come up with some policy such as code to ethics in the workplace environment. Just cause someone grew up a bad apple does not mean that the person is going to be a bad apple there whole life.

People who impact them throughout their lives can change them or a certain job with high ethic standards could change their point of view. It could be as simple as one person who influences that person for them to change to the perspective on their ethics. Without ethics in organizations, there would be no sense of trust among employees and as well with customers. You want to know your employees are making ethical decisions because you cannot watch everyone that works for you all the time. You want them to act the same way whether you are in a room with them or a thousand miles away.

It is your responsibility as a leader to influence these people and instill these values and ethics in them. You need to make your employees believe in you and your ideas. Throughout my life ,I feel I have had strong morals but many people have influenced me in a positive way. Most people just need positive influences in their life to shape them to have good strong ethics. I was just lucky enough to have these people in my life from an early age and throughout my life. I have never been the person who does things for entitlement-based, I do not find myself making decisions solely on the basis of what is best for myself.

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Decision making Essay

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Decision making Essay
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  • University/College:
    University of California

  • Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter

  • Words: 2727

  • Pages: 11

Decision making

SLIDE 1 – INTRODUCTORY SLIDE Ethical theories provide part of the decision-making foundation for Decision Making When Ethics Are In Play because these theories represent the viewpoints from which individuals seek guidance as they make decisions. Each theory emphasizes different points – a different decision-making style or a decision rule—such as predicting the outcome and following one’s duties to others in order to reach what the individual considers an ethically correct decision.

In order to understand ethical decision making, it is important for students to realize that not everyone makes decisions in the same way, using the same information, employing the same decision rules. In order to further understand ethical theory, there must be some understanding of a common set of goals that decision makers seek to achieve in order to be successful. Four of these goals include beneficence, least harm, respect for autonomy, and justice. SLIDE 2 – ETHICAL PRINCIPLES Beneficence The principle of beneficence guides the decision maker to do what is right and good.

This priority to “do good” makes an ethical perspective and possible solution to an ethical dilemma acceptable. This principle is also related to the principle of utility, which states that we should attempt to generate the largest ratio of good over evil possible in the world. This principle stipulates that ethical theories should strive to achieve the greatest amount of good because people benefit from the most good. This principle is mainly associated with the utilitarian ethical theory discussed later in this set of notes. Least Harm Similar to beneficence, least harm deals with situations in which no choice appears beneficial.

In such cases, decision makers seek to choose to do the least harm possible and to do harm to the fewest people. Students might argue that people have a greater responsibility to “do no harm” than to take steps to benefit others. For example, a student has a larger responsibility to simply walk past a teacher in the hallway rather than to make derogatory remarks about that teacher as he/she walks past even though the student had failed that teacher’s class. Respect for Autonomy This principle states that decision making should focus on allowing people to be autonomous—to be able to make decisions that apply to their lives.

Thus, people should have control over their lives as much as possible because they are the only people who completely understand their chosen type of lifestyle. Ask students if they agree. Are there limits to autonomy? Each individual deserves respect because only he/she has had those exact life experiences and understands his emotions, motivations, and physical capabilities in such an intimate manner. In essence, this ethical principle is an extension of the ethical principle of beneficence because a person who is independent usually prefers to have control over his life experiences in order to obtain the lifestyle that he/she enjoys.

Justice The justice ethical principle states that decision makers should focus on actions that are fair to those involved. This means that ethical decisions should be consistent with the ethical theory unless extenuating circumstances that can be justified exist in the case. This also means that cases with extenuating circumstances must contain a significant and vital difference from similar cases that justify the inconsistent decision. Ask students if they describe what extenuating circumstances might be. Ethical Theories By Larry Chonko, Ph. D. The University of Texas at Arlington.

NOTES: ___________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ 1 presents

SLIDE 3 – FORMS OF ETHICAL THEORIES For individuals, the ethical theory they employ for decision making guidance emphasizes aspects of an ethical dilemma important to them and leads them to the most ethically correct resolution according to the guidelines within the ethical theory itself. Four broad categories of ethical theory include deontology, utilitarianism, rights, and virtues. Deontology The deontological class of ethical theories states that people should adhere to their obligations and duties when engaged in decision making when ethics are in play. This means that a person will follow his or her obligations to another individual or society because upholding one’s duty is what is considered ethically correct.

For instance, a deontologist will always keep his promises to a friend and will follow the law. A person who adheres to deontological theory will produce very consistent decisions since they will be based on the individual’s set duties. Deontology contains many positive attributes, but it also contains flaws. One flaw is that there is no rationale or logical basis for deciding an individual’s duties. For instance, a businessperson may decide that it is his/her duty to always be on time to meetings. Although this appears to be something good, we do not know why the person chose to make this his duty. Ask students what reasons they might provide for this behavior.

Sometimes, a person’s duties are in conflict. For instance, if the business person who must be on time to meetings is running late, how is he/she supposed to drive? Is speeding breaking his/her duty to society to uphold the law, or is the businessperson supposed to arrive at the meeting late, not fulfilling the duty to be on time? Ask students how they would rectify the conflicting obligations to arrive at an a clear ethically-correct resolution. Also ask students to bring into play the consideration of the welfare of others as a result of the business person’s decision. Utilitarianism Utilitarian ethical theories are based on one’s ability to predict the consequences of an action.

To a utilitarian, the choice that yields the greatest benefit to the most people is the one that is ethically correct. There are two types of utilitarianism, act utilitarianism and rule utilitarianism. Act utilitarianism subscribes precisely to the definition of utilitarianism—a person performs the acts that benefit the most people, regardless of personal feelings or the societal constraints such as laws. Rule utilitarianism takes into account the law and is concerned with fairness. A rule utilitarian seeks to benefit the most people but through the fairest and most just means available. Therefore, added benefits of rule utilitarianism are that it values justice and includes beneficence at the same time. Both act and rule utilitarianism have disadvantages.

Although people can use their life experiences to attempt to predict outcomes, no one can be certain that his/her predictions will be accurate. Uncertainty can lead to unexpected results making the utilitarian decision maker appear unethical as time passes, as the choice made did not benefit the most people as predicted.

Another assumption that a utilitarian decision maker must make concerns his/her ability to compare the various types of consequences against each other on a similar scale. But, comparing material gains, such as money, against intangible gains, such as happiness, is very difficult since their qualities differ to such a large extent. An act utilitarian decision maker is concerned with achieving the maximum good.

Thus, one individual’s rights may be infringed upon in order to benefit a greater number of people. In other words, act utilitarianism is not always concerned with justice, beneficence or autonomy for an individual if oppressing the individual leads to the solution that benefits a majority of people. Ethical Theories By Larry Chonko, Ph. D. The University of Texas at Arlington NOTES: ___________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________

___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ 2 presents Ethical Theories By Larry Chonko, Ph. D. The University of Texas at Arlington Still another source of challenge with act utilitarian decision makers occurs when an individual faces one set of variable conditions and then suddenly experiences changes in those conditions.

The change in conditions may lead to a change in the original decision—being be nice to someone one moment and then dislike them the next moment because the situation has changed, and liking the person is no longer beneficial to the most people. In rule utilitarianism, there is the possibility of conflicting rules. Recall the example of the business person running late for a meeting.

Suppose the business person happens to be the CEO, who may believe that it is ethically correct to arrive at important meetings on time as the members of the company will benefit from this decision. The CEO may encounter conflicting ideas about what is ethically correct if he/she is running late. Yet, the CEO believes that he/she should follow the law because this benefits society. Simultaneously, he/she believes that it is ethically correct to be on time for his meeting because it is a meeting that also benefits the society.

There appears to be no ethically correct answer for this scenario. Rights In ethical theories based on rights, the rights established by a society are protected and given the highest priority. Rights are considered to be ethically correct and valid since a large population endorses them. Individuals may also bestow rights upon others if they have the ability and resources to do so. For example, a person may say that her friend may borrow her laptop for the afternoon. The friend who was given the ability to borrow the laptop now has a right to the laptop in the afternoon.

A major complication of this theory on a larger scale is that one must decipher what the characteristics of a right are in a society. The society has to determine what rights it wants to uphold and give to its citizens. In order for a society to determine what rights it wants to enact, it must decide what the society’s goals and ethical priorities are. Therefore, in order for the rights theory to be useful, it must be used in conjunction with another ethical theory that will consistently explain the goals of the society. For example in America people have the right to choose their religion because this right is upheld in the Constitution. One of the goals of the Founding Fathers’ of America was to uphold this right to freedom of religion.

Virtue The virtue ethical theory judges a person by his/her character rather than by an action that may deviate from his/her normal behavior. It takes the person’s morals, reputation, and motivation into account when rating an unusual and irregular behavior that is considered unethical. For instance, if a person plagiarized a passage that was later detected by a peer, the peer who knows the person well will understand the person’s character and will judge the friend accordingly.

If the plagiarizer normally follows the rules and has good standing amongst his colleagues, the peer who encounters the plagiarized passage may be able to judge his friend more leniently. Perhaps the researcher had a late night and simply forgot to credit his or her source appropriately.

Conversely, a person who has a reputation for academic misconduct is more likely to be judged harshly for plagiarizing because of his/her consistent past of unethical behavior. One weakness of virtue ethical theory is that it does not take into consideration a person’s change in moral character. For example, a scientist who may have made mistakes in the past may honestly have the same late night story as the scientist in good standing. Neither of these scientists intentionally plagiarized, but the act was still committed. On the other hand, a researcher may have a sudden change from moral to immoral character may go unnoticed until a significant amount of evidence mounts up against him/her.

NOTES: ___________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ 3 presents

SLIDES 4-6 – SELECTED PRINCIPLES OF ETHICAL CONDUCT When individuals find themselves in a decision-making situation when ethics are in play, there are a variety of ethical theories (decision rules) which provide decision-making guidance as individuals strive to make ethically correct answers. Each ethical theory attempts to adhere to the ethical principles that lead to success when trying to reach the best decision.

Most individuals adopt a preferred decision-making style (e. g. do unto others … ), but might adjust it depending on decision circumstances. As decision makers, they soon discover that others have adopted different decision rules. Thus, a team of decision makers must first understand the decision-making styles and decision rules of all members of the team.

SLIDES 7 – 9 – A TAXONOMY OF ETHICAL TYPES There are three different approaches to examining how ethical theories (differing decisionmaking styles and decision rules) impact decision making. The first group, entitled, “Selected Principles of Ethical Conduct,” present different ethical theories or decision making styles. The second group, entitled “A Taxonomy of Ethical Types” also provides a look at different decision-making styles, presenting some of the positives and negatives associated with each. The third group, entitled “Models of Personal and Organizational Development,” also deals with decision-making styles but presents them in a hierarchy from simple to more sophisticated.

SLIDES 10-12 – MODELS OF PERSONAL AND ORGANIZATIONAL DEVELOPMENT From Cognitive Moral Development (as espoused by Lawrence Kohlberg in The Philosophy of Moral Development: Moral Stages and the Idea of Justice, 1981, HarperCollins Publishers) Cognitive Moral Development asserts that ethics education is possible. Just as people develop mentally, physically, and emotionally, they develop a moral cognizance. Using critical thinking and decision-making tactics such as the Socratic method, people can solve their ethical dilemmas.

Kohlberg taught that there were six stages of ethical thinking, each stage being of greater maturity than the previous one. By delineating these levels, we are allowed to know and test our own thinking and decision making. This helps individuals know themselves better and challenges them to move on to a higher level of thinking.

To examine how different ethical theories (decision-making styles and decision rules enter into team decision making, the following questions are presented. 1. Ask students to play the role of a hospital administrator who has been asked to set up an Ethics Task Force in the hospital. The task force will deal with ethical dilemmas that may confront hospital staff and advise in establishing ethical guidelines for the treatment of patients. (a) What kind of persons would you look for to fill this position? What values would you want them to hold? What types of ethical sensitivity would you be looking for? (b) What basic ethical principles would you advise the task force to follow? 2.

Now tell students they are charged with the same task described in Question #1, but this time for a market research firm instead of a hospital. What would the differences be? If there are any differences, what conclusions would you draw about the way we define the moral ballpark? 3. An undergraduate student published A Students’ Guide to Good Grades 10. This book was written to help students learn how to cheat. You can ask students many questions about this: What ethical issues do you see associated with publishing such a book? Should the campus bookstore carry it? Why or why not? Should the campus Ethical Theories By Larry Chonko, Ph. D. The University of Texas at Arlington.

NOTES: ___________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ 4 presents Ethical Theories By Larry Chonko, Ph. D. The University of Texas at Arlington newspaper carry advertisements for the book? Similarly, should the campus newspaper carry advertisements for companies that will write students’ research papers for them? Again, what are the relevant ethical considerations here? Are these issues in the ethical ballpark? Why or why not? What is the ethical issue that you are most undecided about? Describe the pros and cons relating to this issue. How do you go about arriving at a decision when it is unavoidable?

NOTES: ___________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________ 5

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Decision making Essay

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  • University/College:
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  • Words: 802

  • Pages: 3

Decision making

Since the beginning of time man has been given the ability to make choices. He must choose many things during life. One of the most important choices that man has to make is the choice between good and evil. We have the ability to choose. To understand our potential in this matter you must know what good and evil is, if we are born naturally good or evil, and why we make the choices we do. Good and evil has been around forever. Some of the first recorded writings in history is about the battle between good and evil.

We have witnessed good and evil in large scales, and small scales through out our life. Everyone knows someone who they think are good, and they think are evil. Evil is always easier to spot than good. It takes more good to be noticed than evil. A great example of this is on Sept. 11th . A few men decided to do something evil, and they affected millions of lives. There was probably a million people that did something good that day, but the evil overshadowed it all. Depending on what society you live in is really what determines what good and evil is for you.

Religion plays a big part in categorizing the two. In all religions there are rules that you must live by in order to be a good person, and when you break those rules you can be considered evil. There are many speculations that man is born either evil or good. That we enter this world one way or the other. Many religions say that you are born bad, a sinner, and you must live your life correctly in order to become good. Other popular beliefs are you have a choice to some extent. You grow up learning what is bad and what is good.

You know what your society, and religion says is good and evil. And it is your job to make the difficult decision on what to do. There is also talk about genes, DNA, and inheriting good or evil tendencies. If you are the child of two evil people are you going to be evil yourself? How do people living everyday life come to the decision they need about good and evil? Why is it that evil is most of the time an easier choice than good? These are good question. When you are old enough to start making decisions on your own you make these educated decisions off of many things.

Those things are society, how you were raised, religion and your conscious. In society we know it is good to work hard and make a living, while being evil and stealing and murdering is an easier way to get money. It is harder to do the right thing and go to school and get a good job. If you were raised in a good or evil way plays a big part in your decision making skills. If you saw your mother and father doing evil things, you are more likely to do those bad things and think that they are okay. It is nature over nurture. Religion plays a huge part in the decision between good and evil.

It is probably one of the biggest reasons people give to explain drastic actions either good or evil. In Iraq right now there is a lot of evil people killing innocent people. They say that it is because of their religion. It is a holy choice to kill. They think it is good based off of religion, and society says it is evil. Your conscious plays a small part in being good and evil. When you do the right thing you feel better about yourself. When you do something evil or bad you have that lingering feeling in the back of your mind that is telling you that you should not have done that and you need to not do that again.

These are the reasons people use to choose between good and evil. Since the beginning of time humans have had the ability to chose everything they did in their life. One of the biggest choices being whether to do the right thing or the wrong thing. Whether to be good or evil. We are born with the great ability to be good. As long as you work hard and do the right thing you will be considered good whether you are basing your definition of good off of religion, society, or your own conscious. We all have the potential for good and evil.

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  • University/College:
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Decision Making

The decision making approach that will be employed by the organization is based on a model where all members of the organization will be involved. A decision is made when the organization is faced with some problems in its operations or when the organization plans to redraw its operation so as to plan for the future. The top management, after realizing the need for change on the specified areas that may either be controversial or whose effect is organization wide, instigates a research that will involve all the members of the organization including the investors.

The research must be through in that it should analyze the internal operational environment, the industry conditions, market trends and predicts any change in the environment. Moreover, the research must accurately determine the compatibility of the range of opinions and thus solution to the organizational culture and their profitability or effects on the organization productivity. The findings must be presented before the board of management who will ascertain the viability of the solutions and choose the one that best address the needs of the organization and is sustainable with respect to its resources.

The board will at all time be constituted of all stakeholders in the organization including departmental representatives, departmental heads, top managers, trade union representatives and investors each of whom have equal right of expressing their points of view. The top management is charged wit the responsibility of evaluating the recommendations made by the research team and ensuring that the whole organization implements the decisions passed.

The organization understands that in any community where the members are actively involved in any form of economic or social undertaking that involves their interaction and varied output, problems must always be present. The organization adopts the Osborne-Parnes problem solving methodology that is based on creativity. The first stage in the solution of a problem is the determination of the goals and challenges that the organization works for. After which the management is charged with the responsibility of instructing the research teams to find all data, facts and emotional responses involved.

The data and findings will help in bringing out the problems that will affect the achievement of the goals. In clarification of the problem the two main concerns are the needs that should be addressed and the problems that should be focused on. The decision in this phase is based on the perceived impact of the problems as per the research findings. The next stage is the generation of ideas which involves all stakeholders in the organization. The research department and teams are responsible for the implementation of the idea generation process.

The main concern at this stage is finding out all the solutions to the problems without any consideration of their effectiveness. The main methodology in the generation of ideas is brainstorming which is implemented in groups. The next stage is implemented by the board of management with the help of the research teams. The main concern at this stage is finding out how the solutions can be made better. Pareto analysis is used in determination of the best method though the implementation of a cause effect analysis will also aid in determining a range of good solutions to the problems.

The last phase is a decision making process as the whole organization takes step that are aimed at implementation of the solutions. The decision making model is adopted in this last phase. ii. Behavior The organization appreciates the effects of behavior on the operations and other aspects such as investor confidence and the respect the organization will receive from all in the organization. The employees and all stakeholders will at all time endeavors to uphold a code of conduct that is respectful of their colleagues and all that they may relate to in the course of their activities.

The main methodology that will be used in the assessment of the organization employees’ behavior is based on Osborne-Parnes approach. The methodology involves the creation of a code of behavior that all employees are expected to follow. Research is then undertaken to establish the organization behavior with the aim of establishing its relationship and association to the code of behavior. Conformance and other areas of divergence are accurately determined and their exact nature established.

The causes of the divergence must be determined through wide research and the results presented to either the top management or to the department heads depending on the level of the investigation and who instigated it. The impact of the diversion on the end consumer of the services and product is determined and the impact on the organization’s operation and thus productivity noted. The problem solving mechanism is then applied to solve the area of divergence and any anomalies in the code of behavior corrected.

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  • University/College:
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Decision making

The time taken by the organization in making decision is quite varied and cannot be correctly determined as the nature of the problem and other variables that can never be determined nor controlled easily have a great bearing on the total time (Curan & Mitchell, 2001). The nature of the organization and the kind of decision to be made also have a bearing on the time taken. It time critical decision making the aspects of time is important and the challenge thus lies in coming up with sound decision within limited time (Curan & Mitchell, 2001).

Most theories adopted in decision making leave out the time taken in selection of actions which is often considerable in organizations where the decisions are viewed differently by constituent members (Curan & Mitchell, 2001). Coming up with a solution that are made without consideration of a well carried out problem solving session could lead to solutions that lack in operational significance, thus any decision making should be aimed at finding the solution that is either associated with the least cost or most returns of the total costs (Curan & Mitchell, 2001).

In coming up with the cost, organizations must include the cost and effort taken in thinking and coming up with a plan or a policy in determination of the time taken in decision making. The problem with time considerations is that complex problems may hinder the development of best solutions (Spezzano & Mertens, 1999). In some instances, coming up with the best solutions could be within organizations grasp but the cost associated with such may not be acceptable to the organization.

The organizational structure plays a great role in the speed of the decision making process (Spezzano & Mertens, 1999). A structure whereby all members of the organization have to be involved is time consuming (Kaplinsky, 2007). Such an approach is inclusive and the decisions made from this approach are more likely to meet both the needs and wants of the organization. The implementation of such policies is often smooth as those charged with the responsibility of carrying out the policies are well aware of the good and thus have the motivation required for the implementation.

The tread off in this approach is the time taken; the approach requires organization wide consultation and is time intensive. Getting the opinion of each and everyone in a medium or large organization and coming upon with a decision based on their varied views can be demanding on an organization’s financial resources and time. Most organizations have adopted a mechanism where the executives and top managers exclusively take part in the formulation of the policies.

Such an approach is time conscious and often leads to timely formulation of policies. Despite this, the relevance of the policies to the needs of the organization is brought into question as the people charged with the responsibility of implementation are not included in the formulation. Policies implemented through this mechanism often address what the organization wants rather than what it needs since organizations are best known by the people charged with the duty of policy implementation.

Deciding on the correct approach is thus complicated as both time and relevance of decisions are very important, moreover, company heads have in a number of occasions made decisions that have turned out to be for the good of organizations without necessarily involving everyone, this complicates the issue even further. Therefore, organizations have to consider all the factors inherent of their organization that affect the decision making effort and thus the cost of decision making associated with each approach before deciding on whether to buy or build Automated office systems support.

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