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  1. 1. Management and Law Department (MLD)Centre for Foundation Studies and Extension Education (FOSEE) PCR0025 Critical Thinking All Foundation ONLINE NOTES FOSEE , MULTIMEDIA UNIVERSITY (436821-T) MELAKA CAMPUS, JALAN AYER KEROH LAMA, 75450 MELAKA, MALAYSIA. Tel 606 252 3594 Fax 606 231 8799 URL:
  2. 2. PCR0015 Critical Thinking Topic 4Topic 6: Decision Making• Decision making and problem solving are often closely related.• Decision making is making a choice among two or more alternatives to solve the problem.• This ability to make decision is highly related to the first component of emotional intelligence, knowing your emotion. You can only make important life decision if you know your values, goals, priorities, weakness and strength, emotion, and problems.The Scope of decision making: 1. Individual decision making 2. Group decision makingIndividual decision making• Much of an individual’s decision making is done to solve problems – personal, employment, or social.• Individuals tend to employ rather simple strategies, even in the presence of complex problems, to obtain desirable solutions.• Problem solving behavior is adaptive. Individuals start with a tentative solution, search for information, modify the initial solution, and continue until there is some balance between expected and realized results.• Individual decision making is constrained by imperfect information, time and cost factors.• The psychological forces such as the individual’s personality, aversion to or preference for risk will affect the choice of strategies, and ultimate decision making.Group decision making• The decisions that affect the future of our civilization and of the human race are made in a group context. For instance, the decisions made by members of the organization to set up the policy and rules.• There are times when an individual is more effective than group. For instance, an individual can make decision more quickly, and with expertise and experience, someone can make the right decision for others.• However, there are many times when groups can be more effective than individuals. These are some of the advantages/benefits of group decisions: 1. Greater sum total of knowledge or information______________________________________________________________________________________MM 2/4
  3. 3. PCR0015 Critical Thinking Topic 4 2. Greater number of approaches to a problem. 3. Participation in decision making increases general acceptance of the final choice. 4. Better comprehension of the decision. 5. Responsibility for the decision is diffused and therefore there is less risk for any individual.• These are some of the drawbacks of group decisions: 1. Social pressure 2. Acceptance of first supported solutions 3. Individual domination 4. Winning decision to everybodyGroupthink• Psychologist Irving Janis (1982) has studied the factor of groupthink that negatively influence decision making.• Groupthink refers to a mode of thinking that people engage in when they are deeply involved in a cohesive ingroup, when the members’ strivings for unanimity override their motivation to realistically appraise alternative courses of action.• 3 factors that cause group decision making to result in groupthink: 1. the process of polarization 2. the cohesiveness of the members of the group 3. the size of the group• Groupthink has been blamed for many faulty decisions.Points to ponder:• Before we set goals, we have to make important decisions in our lives. We should be asking ourselves: “How am I going to live the next ten years of my life? How am I going to live today in order to create the tomorrow I’m committed to? What’s important for me right now, and what will be important for me in the long term? What actions can I take today that will shape my ultimate destiny?”• Everything that happens in your life begins with a decision. “It’s in your moments of decision that your destiny is shaped. The decisions that you’re making right now, every day, will shape how your feel today as well as who you’re going to become.”______________________________________________________________________________________MM 3/4
  4. 4. PCR0015 Critical Thinking Topic 4• “It’s our decisions, not the conditions of our lives, that determine our destiny.”• “It’s not where you start out but the decisions that you make about where you’re determined to end up that matter.”• The Ultimate Success Formula (elementary process for getting where you want to go): 1. Decide what you want 2. Take action 3. Notice what’s working or not 4. Change your approach until you achieve what you want.• The three decisions that control your destiny are: 1. Your decisions about what to focus on. 2. Your decisions about what things to mean to you. 3. Your decisions about what to do to create the results you desire.• “In order to succeed, you must have long-term focus. Success and failure are not overnight experiences. It’s small decisions along the way that cause people to fail. It’s failure to follow up. It’s failure to take action. It’s failure to persist. It’s failure to control what we focus on.”• “God’s delays are not God’s denials. Often, what seems impossible in the short term becomes very possible in the long term if you persist. In order to succeed, we need to discipline ourselves to consistently think long term.”• Six keys to harness the power of decisions:1. Remember the true power of making decisions. “It’s a tool you can use in any moment to change your entire life. The minute you make a new decision, you set in motion a new cause, effect, direction, and destination for your life.”2. Realize that the hardest step in achieving anything is making a true commitment—a true decision. Make your decisions intelligently and quickly. Don’t dwell for too long over the question of how or if you can do it. Research shows that the most successful people make decisions rapidly because they are clear on their values and what they really want for their lives. Research also shows that these people are slow to change their decisions, if at all.______________________________________________________________________________________MM 4/4
  5. 5. PCR0015 Critical Thinking Topic 43. Make decisions often. “The more decisions you make, the better you’re going to become at making them.” Also, “the more often you make decisions, the more you’ll realize that you truly are in control of your life.”4. Learn from your decisions. There are times when you’re going o screw up no matter what you do. Instead of emotionally and mentally beating yourself, learn from these setbacks. Ask yourself, “What’s good about this? What can I learn from this?” This ‘failure’ may be a gift in disguise if you use it to make better decisions in the future.5. Stay committed to your decisions, but stay flexible in your approach. You’re after the end. So, don’t get stuck on the means of achieving the end.6. Enjoy making decisions. Bear in mind that in any moment a decision you make can change the course of your life forever. If you really want your life to be passionate, you need to live with this attitude of expectancy.______________________________________________________________________________________MM 5/4