Making Tough Decisons


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Making Tough Decisons

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  • Usually what people do in such situations is freeze.  Even when you don’t like what you have, you may worry that the alternatives are worse.  In a way every decision involves a choice between maintaining the status quo vs. making a change.  When we can’t be certain a change will work out for the better, by default we stay put.
  • To identify all of the possible factors that contribute to a problem, i.e. the "effect." Used to find problem sources/ solutions
  • Is this job really me? Is this company really me? Is being an employee (or enterpreneur or investor or business owner) really me? Is this relationship really me? Is this city really me? Is this house really me? Is this book I’m reading really me? Is this shirt/dress/tie really me? Is this friend really me? Is this hobby really me? Is this car really me? Is this food really me?
  • Six elements go into a good decision: (1) The right frame — making sure you’re solving the right problem in the first place. (2) Clarity about what you want . For example, are you trying to maximize shareholder value or just trying to stay alive and minimize damage? (3) Creative alternatives . (4) Gathering the right information , including information about uncertainty, which is essential if you want to choose the best alternative. (5 ) Reasoning , which includes what you know and what you don’t. (6) A commitment to make it happen , since a decision is no stronger than its weakest link. A decision only has three possibilities. I will define these as "win", "lose", or "tie". Thus there can only be two expected outcomes "Tie or Lose" or "Tie and Win"The next time you are faced with a hard decision ask yourself, "Can I tie or win or can I only tie or lose?". You only proceed  with decisions in which you can tie or win and leave the ties and losses for others or at least know the outcome of your decision will not be winningYour goal is to be happy. Your present job makes you unhappy, but the falling behind on your bills also makes you unhappy. If you change vocations, you may fall behind on your bills. ( You're situation is you have 1 out of 2) If you stay in your job you can only "tie or lose'". If you switch jobs, you can only "tie or win". What to do? Change jobs.
  • USE YOUR BEST JUDGMENT! Capricious, Arbitrary, and Fairly arrived at The demand for due process means that decisions were made in a reasonable manner
  • Making Tough Decisons

    1. 1. Making Tough Decision John Pisapia Administrative Processes
    2. 2. Why? <ul><li>Decision making is a choice between 2 or more alternatives </li></ul><ul><li>Tough decisions involve non routine problems and one or more unknowns.  We can’t know in advance what the consequences of each alternative will be.  This is especially true of big decisions like quitting a job, entering or exiting a relationship, picking a new car or moving to a new city. </li></ul><ul><li>Making a tough decision usually involves giving up something else. That's what makes it hard—there's a loss to deal with as well as the uncertainly of the future. We resist change when the number of Positive things in our lives is equal to the number of Negative things. Comparing these Positives and Negatives objectively helps us to move forward. . </li></ul><ul><li>When faced with such a decision, what do you do?  If you can’t figure out the consequences, can you do any better than guessing? </li></ul>
    3. 3. ACTIVITY #1 <ul><li>In Class </li></ul><ul><li>Think of a tough decision you have made or need to make in your life. </li></ul><ul><li>Write down some notes about it. </li></ul><ul><li>Share it with the class </li></ul>
    4. 4. Key concepts: Factors that influence tough decision making <ul><li>Factors to consider – </li></ul><ul><li>goals – values - priority – acceptability - risk - resources – </li></ul><ul><li>Decision making conditions </li></ul><ul><li>certainty – risk- uncertainty </li></ul><ul><li>Type of problem </li></ul><ul><li>Well structured – programmed – Poorly structure – non programmed </li></ul><ul><li>Decision making Styles – </li></ul><ul><li>Directive - analytical - conceptual - behavioral </li></ul><ul><li>Decision making approach – </li></ul><ul><li>rationality – bounded rationality intuition </li></ul>
    5. 5. <ul><li>Problem Analysis- what’s the problem? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Understand and define the problem thoroughly </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Gathering their data </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Look at potential causes for the problem </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Solution analysis- what’s the best solution? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Getting ideas on how the problem can be solved </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Indentify alternative approaches to solves the problem </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Testing Problem solutions </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Select the best approach to solving the problem </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Deciding </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Verify if the problem has been resolved </li></ul></ul></ul>What? Theory - The Basic Models: Steps to Making a Tough Decision
    6. 6. PROBLEM ANALYSIS <ul><li>Get enough information to: </li></ul><ul><li>I dentify the issue. What is the basic message - solving a social problem, social morality, identifying a crisis, or being in favor or against something? </li></ul><ul><li>Locate the underlying assumptions. Are the assumptions valid? Does the statement hold water? Does the argument contain any compelling or persuasive features? Rephrase the question or problem to see if new issues emerge </li></ul><ul><li>List the key problem issues </li></ul><ul><li>Identify possible causes. </li></ul><ul><li>Restate the problem considering new information. </li></ul><ul><li>Source: NASSP Springfield - Skill Development for School Leaders </li></ul>
    8. 8. Solution Analysis <ul><li>Decisions are acts of self-expression </li></ul><ul><li>For each alternative you’re considering, ask yourself, “Is this really me?” To what degree does each option reflect the real you? When we look at choices as being more than just paths — as being creative statements of self-expression — certain decisions become much easier to make.  You may say to yourself, “This path isn’t going to be easy, but I know this is the right way to go because it’s who I am.”  Or you may conclude, “No matter how I try to represent this to myself, I know that deep down this isn’t who I am.  This just isn’t me.” </li></ul><ul><li>Apply the 10-10-10 criteria </li></ul><ul><li>Here’s how it works: When working through a decision, you let yourself go down various paths and you explore the way the decision could unfold on those various paths over the next 10 minutes, over the next 10 months, and over the next 10 years. </li></ul><ul><li>Those time frames aren’t meant to be exact; they are stand-ins meant to help you look at how the making of an important decision might affect the short-term, the medium-term, and long-term periods of your life. The core of your process is about exploring short-term, medium-term and long-term goals, all while staying true to one’s values. It seems to assume that most people can identify their authentic values and these different goals. In your experience, where do people have the most trouble? </li></ul>How?
    9. 9. ACTIVITY #2 <ul><li>A tool to help in your individual decision. </li></ul><ul><li>Create an action plan </li></ul>Total= Total= + Score 1-10 Positives What I’m deciding to change. Negatives - Score 1-10
    10. 10. Key Concepts Testing Potential Problem Solutions LEVEL I FILTERS TEST Legitimate Does fall under my scope of authority? (No, then stop) Feasible Can it be carried out? What is the capacity of the people who must implement the alternative? Is it cost efficient? Are adequate resources available to implement the alternative? Acceptable What impact will it have on people? How will it be received by those affected? Will it be burdensome or helpful to those who have to implement the decision? Understandable Is it easy to explain and to grasp?
    11. 11. Making the Decision <ul><li>Ask </li></ul><ul><li>What is your primary motivate as you make a decision? </li></ul><ul><li>Will the consequences to your decision be long-term or temporary? </li></ul><ul><li>Can you trust the decision to be left in someone else’s hand? </li></ul><ul><li>What is the worst result your decision can bring, and can you accept it? </li></ul><ul><li>What do you trust more in tough decisions, your logical side, or your emotional side? </li></ul><ul><li>Am I commited to making it happen? </li></ul>How?
    12. 12. Key Concepts Making the Decision LEVEL II FILTERS TEST Goals Impact Does it solve the problem identified? Does it help the organization meet a particular goal? Is it timely? Will it have a high, medium, or low impact on goals? Reasonable Is it reasonable? Is it based on available evidence? (No -then its arbitrary) Has it been reasonably arrived at? Would a reasonable individual, presented with the same circumstances and evidence, make the same decision? (No, then its has not been fairly arrived at) Ethical Is it legal? Does it violate any laws, policies or rules? Is it based on known standards? ( No, then its Capricious) Is it balanced? Who benefits? Whose interests are served? Does it balance individual rights with common good? (Yes, then its just!)
    13. 13. Take-Aways How?
    14. 14. References <ul><li>Osland, J., Kolb, D., Rubin, I., Turner, M. (2007). Organizational Behavior: An Experiential Approach (8th ed) pp. 468-488. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education Inc. </li></ul><ul><li>Pisapia, J. (1998). Decision Making and Problem Solving . Working paper. </li></ul><ul><li>Gordon, J., (2003). Pfeiffer’s Classic Activities for Building Better Teams. Retrieved from http:// </li></ul>
    15. 15. Pisapia & Glick-Cuenot (2010)
    16. 16. Group Activity- Lost at Sea <ul><li>_________Sextant _________Shaving mirror </li></ul><ul><li>_________5 gallon can of water _________Mosquito netting </li></ul><ul><li>_________One case of Army rations _________Maps of Pacific ocean </li></ul><ul><li>_________Seat cushion _________Shark repellent </li></ul><ul><li>_________2 gallon can of oil/gas _________transistor radio </li></ul><ul><li>_________20ft^2 of opaque plastic _________15ft nylon rope </li></ul><ul><li>_________1qt of 160 proof rum _________ Fishing kit </li></ul><ul><li>_________2 boxes of chocolate bars </li></ul>