Decision making and problem solving

Introduction

It is known that good decision making and problem solving skills are essential for effective managers in today’s competitive environment. As managers make decisions every day, they are responsible for the successful achievement of the major organizational goals. Most managers believe that “to the extent their decisions are rational they contribute directly to the objectives of the organization.”Of course, all managers should take into consideration the fact that it is very important to know appropriate decision making and problem solving strategies which will help to find the right way out of this or that situation and to achieve positive outcomes.

Moreover, it is found that those managers who understand the importance of decision making is business will agree that decision making influences every aspect of business, including the employees’ retention, customers’ satisfaction, the reputation of the company in the market and managerial job security. Decision making process is closely connected with problem solving process; that is why it is the major task of any effective manager to develop good decision making and problem solving skills.

My goal in this paper is to discuss the importance of decision making and problem solving in management. In order to achieve this goal it is necessary to review the appropriate literature which will give an opportunity to analyze the above mentioned issues in a proper way. This topic is an interesting one as it gives an opportunity to understand that it is necessary to develop decision making and problem solving skills in today’s managers. Moreover, this topic is both personally and professionally rewarding and helps to find answers about the problems at work and to provide managers with a vehicle for professional advancement.

The importance of problem solving skills development

Today many managers are aware of the importance of development of problem solving skills to succeed in the competitive market. The development of these skills can be performed through learning process as well as through reflection of certain problems that occur in the development phases of business process. Moreover, problem solving skills can help to identify the most powerful influences on the managers’ perceptions of problems.

Problem solving skills should include intuition to solve some critical problems, learning, or the managers’ ability to improve past mistakes, and emotional response to problem solving. Giroux states that emotions play a significant role in “shaping how each person perceives, approaches and solves a problem.”In addition, it is found that luck and destiny also influence the managers’ ability to successfully deal with critical problems in business. Many respondents who took part in the survey used the words luck and destiny when they described the situations in which they tried to resolve critical problems. One more component of problem solving skills is self-efficacy and determination which can help managers to achieve positive outcomes in complex business situations.

Role of creativity in problem solving

It is known that creativity plays an important role in today’s management. The growth of creativity of human potential leads to successful development of our society and economy. Today companies face different problems including simple and complicated ones, absolutely new and routine ones. In most cases, they lead to “blind and automatic decisions.” The common problems most companies face in today’s business environment include development of new effective policies, implementation of changes in the workplace, creation of new products and services, and improvements of existing ones, development and implementation of more effective advertising concepts and so on. Creativity is one of the most important components in problem solving. According to the research conducted by the Institute of Prospective Technology, about 70-80% of competitiveness of business organizations are always based on new technologies and new knowledge.

Ways to speed decision making process

Today most managers understand the importance of speedy decisions in the workplace. It is known that in many cases, the organization’s decisions are moved through several organizational levels.

In order to speed decision making process, managers should eliminate the need to approve decisions by means of elimination of the layers of management. In many cases, it is very important to eliminate unnecessary paper work. Moreover, it is recommended to simplify decision making process in management because “simplification provides another route to speeding up decision making.”

Healthy decision making process involves not only creating the process and consensus building by means of inclusive discussion and critical thinking model, but also feedback from the staff members who can point out where “the successes and failures have occurred.”

Conclusion

In conclusion, it is necessary to say that decision making and problem solving are important components of managerial functions. I consider that intuitive decision making that is considered to be a bridge between unconscious and conscious decision making can help to see possible changes, identify current and future problems, manage information in a proper, and deal with conflict situations. That is why I recommend developing intuitive skills in management. It is necessary to learn to trust intuition. My personal experience proves the fact that good decision making and problem solving skills can help managers to find appropriate strategies for this or that business environment. Moreover, I am sure that in order to speed decision making process, it is necessary to eliminate unnecessary paper work and approvals, to simplify decision making process and to combine skills and knowledge of operational staff. Special attention should be paid to creativity in problem solving as creative managers are always ready to cope with any difficult situation and to achieve positive outcomes in today’s competitive business environment. I will use the information represented in this research project for both my personal and professional development.