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Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 1 In Mixed Company Chapter Eight Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving.

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Presentation on theme: "Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 1 In Mixed Company Chapter Eight Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving."— Presentation transcript:

1 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 1 In Mixed Company Chapter Eight Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving

2 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 2 Multiple Sequence Model: Phases of Decision Making The multiple sequence model pictures groups moving along three activity tracks: task, relational, and topic.

3 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 3 Multiple Sequence Model: Phases of Decision Making Groups on the unitary sequence path proceed in the same step-by-step fashion toward a decision. The second path is called the complex cyclic, these groups engage in repeated cycles of focusing on the problem, then the solution and back again to the problem.

4 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 4 Multiple Sequence Model: Phases of Decision Making Solution oriented, here the group launches into discussion of solutions with little focus on an analysis of the problem.

5 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 5 Functional Perspective: Being Systematic Discussion that follow some systematic procedure tend to be more productive and result in better decisions than relatively unstructured discussions. The drawbacks to unstructured group discussion include: aimless deliberations that are time-consuming and inefficient; premature focus on solutions. These five functions are problem analysis, establishment of evaluation criteria, generation of alternative solutions, evaluation of positive consequences of solutions, and evaluation of negative consequences of solutions.

6 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 6 Problem Identification: What’s the Question The problem should be formulated into an open-ended question identifying what type of problem the group must consider. Once the problem is phrased as a questions of fact, value, or policy, and ambiguous terms should be defined.

7 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 7 Problem Analysis: Causes and Effects The group researches and gathers information on the problem defined, tries to determine how serious the problem is what harm or effect problem produces, and what causes the problem. Although analyzing the problem is important and should be undertaken before exploring potential solutions, analysis paralysis, or bogging down by analyzing the problem too much, can also thwart effect decision making. It prevents a group from ever getting on with business and making a decision.

8 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 8 Solution Criteria: Setting Standards Criteria are standards by which decisions and solutions to problems can be evaluated. The group should establish criteria for evaluating solutions before solutions are suggested. Not all criteria, however, however, are created equal. The group must consider the relevance and appropriateness of each criterion. The criteria should be ranked in order of priority.

9 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 9 Solution Suggestions: Generating Alternatives The group brainstorms possible solutions without evaluating any suggestions until the best alternatives are likely to have emerged. Once a list of ideas has been generated, the group should clarify any ambiguous or confusing ideas. Ideas that overlap should be consolidated into a single idea.

10 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 10 Solution Evaluation and Selection: Deciding by Criteria Explore both the merits and demerits of suggested solutions. Consider each solution in terms of the criteria established earlier. There are three decision-making methods that are used to make solution choices: majority rule, minority rule, or consensous.

11 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 11 Solution Implementation: Follow-Through A common failing of decision making groups is that once they arrive at a decision there is not follow-through. Force field analysis is none method for planning implementation of a group solution or decision. Using force field analysis groups brainstorm a list of driving forces, those that encourage change, and restraining forces those that resist change.

12 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 12 Five ways to reduce resistance to change and consequent restraining forces impeding solution implementation 1.People are more likely to accept change when they have a had a part in the planning and decision making. 2.Changes are more likely to be accepted if they do not threaten group members. 3.Changes are more likely to be accepted when the need for change affects individuals directly. 4.There will less resistance to change when the changes is open to revision and modification. 5.The three factors (degree, rate, and desirability) affecting a group’s ability to adapt to change in a system should be considered.

13 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 13 Program Evaluation Review Technique (PERT) 1.Determine what the final step should look like. 2.Specify any events that must occur before the final goal is realized. 3.If necessary, construct a diagram of the process to trace the progress of implementation. 4.Generate a list of activities, resources, and materials that are required between events. 5.Develop a timeline for implementation. 6.Match the total time estimate for implementation of the solution with any deadlines. 7.Specify which group members will have which responsibilities.

14 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 14 Majority Rule Deliberations are significantly shorter and less conscientious. Minority factions participate less frequently and are less influential, underutilized in the group’s resources When issues are not very important, when decisions must be made relatively quickly, and when commitment of all members to the final decision is unimportant, majority rule can be useful.

15 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 15 Minority Rules-Several Types The group designates one of its members as an expert to make decisions. Designation by expert is mostly ineffective. Designated authority makes the decision for the group, either after heating discussion from group members or without their consultation. Minority rule can take the form of a forceful faction making a decision for the group by dominating less forceful members.

16 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 16 Unanimity Rule: Consensus The unanimity rule governs some groups, juries are an example. Consensus is a state of mutual agreement among members of a group where all legitimate concerns of individuals have been addressed to the satisfaction of the group.

17 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 17 True Consensus True consensus requires agreement, commitment, and satisfaction. All members msut to agree with the groups final decision, but consensus does not require adoption of every member’s personal preference. If all members can agree on an acceptable alternative, even if this alternative is not each members first choice, then you have come close to achieving a true consensus.

18 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 18 True Consensus Groups that use a consensus approach tend to produce better decisions than groups using other decision rules because full discussion of issues is required, every group member must be convinced that the decision is a good one, and minority members are heard. Achieving unanimous agreement from group members is very difficult, especially when the issues are emotionally charged and time for decision making is limited. Consensus is increasingly unlikely as group’s grow larger.

19 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 19 Guidelines to Achieve Consensus 1.Follow the standard agenda. 2.Establish a cooperative climate. 3.Identify the pluses and minuses of potential decisions under consideration. 4.Discuss all concerns of group members and attempt to resolve every one. 5.Avoid adversarial, win-lose arguments 6.Request a “stand aside”- when an individual does not block the group choice. 7.Avoid conflict-suppressing techniques such as coin- flipping. 8.If consensus is impossible despite these guidelines seek a supermajority (minimum of 2/3 agreement)

20 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 20 Increasing Constructive Participation: Jump starting low-participators 1.When low-participators offer contributions, indicate that their participation is valued by actively listening to what that person as to say, and thank them for their contribution. 2.Make issues and problems for discussion relevant to the interests of low-participators. 3.Give low-participators responsibility with certain tasks. 4.Establish a cooperative group climate. 5.Encourage devil’s advocacy and dialectal inquiry.

21 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 21 Complaints Associated with Group Meetings 1.Unclear purpose of the meeting. 2.Participants are unprepared. 3.Key individuals are absent or late. 4.Discussion drifts into irrelevant conversation on unrelated topics. 5.Some participants dominate the conversation and stifle discussion. 6.Decisions made at meetings are not implemented.

22 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 22 The Chair: Controlling the Meeting 1.Don’t call a meeting unless there is not good alternative 2.Contact every participant 3.Prepare a clear agenda and distribute to all members 3 days in advance 4.Move the agenda forward 5.Designate specific time allotment for every discussion item 6.Reserve a few minutes at the end of the meeting to see if objectives were met. 7.Distribute the minutes of the meeting as soon as possible.

23 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 23 Evaluating Information: Applying Criteria Is the information reliable? Is the information as up to day as possible? Does the information support the claims made? A single example or stat may or may not accurately reflect what’s true in this instance.

24 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 24 Guidelines for Determining Statistics The sample size (in polls, surveys, and studies) Samples must be randomly selected, not self-selected. Sufficiency (when enough is really enough) –What type of claim are you making? –Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof.

25 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 25 Creative Problem Solving 1.Creativity is more perspiration than inspiration. 2.Creativity is spurred by challenges 3.Creativity flourishes in cooperative, not competitive environment. 4.Creativity requires sound ideas 5.Creativity requires many ideas 6.Creativity requires breaking mindsets and thinking outside the box.

26 Speech 140 Chapter 8 Effective Decision Making and Problem Solving 26 Competent communicators explore possible solutions to conflicts of interests Conflicting parties should formulate a clear statement of issues and goals. Parties in conflict must determine whether a real conflict of interests exists The parties in disagreement should stick to their goals but remain flexible regarding the means of attaining them. If stalemated concede on low-priority issues or discard low-priority interests.


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