Basics Of Decision Making
Decision making is the most important aspect in any undertaking, including living itself. Making a decision is committing oneself to a specific line of thinking, as well as a specific line of action. The success of the end result and the whole process that leads to these results in any event usually depends on the decisions made at the beginning, and at each stage in the implementation of the idea. The act of making decisions is a learned behavior and not a science, and depends on many factors such as the environment, culture, and wisdom. Therefore, any decision made by an individual is not independent, but greatly depends on numerous factors such as the environment of the individual.
Baron (2000) argued that a good decision is made according to the information available at the time of making the decision. Decisions are usually made towards attaining a specific objective or a goal. Such a goal, as measured by the decision maker, should correspond with the decision made at the initial stage. It therefore follows that the decision maker has to be aware of the cost of attaining that very objective before a final decision is made. Decision making would be the last act of committing oneself in the line of action towards the achievement of a goal. The decision maker would therefore decide as per the availability of the above elements.
Decision making is a resource-using process. Making a decision involves committing oneself to doing a certain thing at a specific time. Part of the decision making process is the determination of how much, in terms of the required fruits, each alternative would be required to bear (Ullman, 2006). The act of making decisions involves an opportunity cost. This means that the decision maker has the obligation to choose one of the lines in question and leave the other. It would be prudent to note that despite the decision made, resources have to be used towards the fruitation of the decision. In addition, as Ullman (2006) explains, the refusal to make any decision still utilizes resources. An issue, if not decided upon, keeps on wasting precious time. The resources available would therefore lead to the final decision made.
The outcome of a decision and the decision making process are most of the time independent. Baron (2000) explains that a good outcome is one that the decision maker likes, while a good decision is one that leads towards the desired objective. However, in some cases good decisions do not necessarily lead to the required outcome. Similarly, an outcome might occur and please the decision maker even though it is not the intended one. The outcome would therefore depend on other factors which might be invisible to the decision maker.
Decisions are prone to influence from the environment, people and other factors that play around an individual. Penning (1986) explains that decisions are mostly influenced by factors such as organization policies, groups, the work place, and the frequency of performing the specific act, among other factors. It therefore means that there are no independent decisions, and every decision has to be influenced by one factor or the other, according to the environment that an individual is placed.
In conclusion, the nature of decisions that an individual makes largely depend on factors such as capability, the available information, and other factors which lead to a specific objective. Therefore the decision making process is dependent on multiple factors, all of which influence the final outcome.
Baron, J. (2000). Thinking and Deciding. New York: Cambridge University Press
Pennings, J. M. (1986). Decision making: An organizational behavior approach. Princeton, NJ: Markus Wiener Publishing Inc.
Ullman, D. G. (2006). Making robust decisions: Decision management for technical, business, and service teams. Victoria, UK: Trafford Publishing
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