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Decision Making - Essay Example

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Week 5 Case study: The Threat of Groupthink (Project No: Date) The Threat of Groupthink Introduction Modern organizations promote team work in their business settings in order for enhancing information sharing and problem solving through departmental integration…
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Decision Making
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Download file to see previous pages When a group experiences the threat of groupthink, as Freeman (1999, p. 249) opines, it would consider few alternatives in its decision making processes. Moreover, it heeds little attention to distinctive ideas and experts’ advice. At this juncture, the role of a project manager is crucial in leading the group to yield the best outcome. This paper will discuss the major impacts of groupthink on decision making and five major tactics that a project manager can put forth to evade this threat. Illusion of invulnerability As mentioned in the introduction, groups that experience groupthink presumably seek little advice from external sources or experts. It normally happens due to their illusion of infallibility or stereotypical nature. In order to avoid these threats, it is advisable to ‘invite different perspectives’ into the decision making process (Thompson, 2006, 177). The author also points out that the absence of different perspective has been the major causes of several corporate or governmental failures in the history (Thompson). Getting intimidated The bigger the team the higher is the chance to be vulnerable to groupthink. Therefore, the project manager should frequently monitor the size of the team so that it would ensure the spontaneous participation of all members. In addition, in order to get rid of members’ fear, the ‘risk technique’ could be implemented. ...
Pressure of uniformity This is another identified symptom of groupthink. In a group that gives higher importance to uniformity, diversity of opinion is less expected. Subsequently members tend to suppress their personal perspectives with intent to preserve group cohesion. It will deteriorate the quality of decision as the group is less likely to consider various dimensions of the issue addressed. A leader who would stand impartial might be apt to this situation. In addition, the decision can be delayed by keeping the meeting for another occasion. As per this tactic, “teams may be given guidelines that emphasize continued solicitations of solutions, protection of individuals from criticism, keeping the discussion problem centered, and listing all solutions before evaluating them” (Maier, 1952 cited in Thompson, 2006, p. 176-77). Over dependence on leader Members of a group sometimes tend to rely on the abilities of its leader. This over dependence later gives way to their frustration as the leader would not meet the expected levels of performance in the overall task. This is also one of the negative outcomes of groupthink which can be avoided only by promoting the full-fledged efforts of every member. In order to ensure active participation, manager should confirm the size and structure of the group while assigning tasks. Once the group is identified for its passive response the assigned task, it can be asked for finding “a second solution or decision recommendation as an alternative to their first choices” (Thompson, 2006, p. 179). The process can be intensified further by using time pressure on members to reach decision by solving the problems assigned to each member. This tactic ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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