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Decision Making Essay

Managers are faced with many decisions to make during the hour, day, week, month, and year. There are various decision-making techniques and approaches that a manager can use to process and administer these decisions must be made. Once managers have a good foundation where the problem stems, the manager can see about the speed in which to respond to the problem. Some problems can be fixed with quick action while managers may find other problems that need to be responded to by a more convoluted approach.

In reviewing the problem of Tower Automotive as previously discussed, the problem that was brought to the attention of the American managers and administration members were that managers in other countries were not accurate in the reporting, if the reporting was completed at all, of essential data needed for the new-found operational metrics program. The managers and administration became aware if the non-reporting and incorrectly reported statistics when the reports were published. At this point, the American managers and administration attempted to try to resolve the issue.

The first attempt by the American managers and administration was to use a fast acting decision-making technique. In general the quick action method has three characteristics in which the decision was made. These three characteristics in a quick action fix are: speed, complete reliance on the decision-maker, and that there is a limited search for information and alternatives (Browne, M., Keeley, S., McCall, M., Kaplan, R., 2003, pgs. 136-137). Browne, et al. indicates that when the managers use the quick method, the manager hopes that the speed in which the problem was handled will lead to the rapid dissolution. Further, that the quick solution is also the complete reliance on the decision-maker. The decision-maker solves the problem quickly by making a unilateral decision in how to solve the problem. The last quick action decision process involves a limited search for information and alternatives. A through investigation is not done when acting on the problem, reliance that the problem is correctly determined is used and that no further research is necessary for a quick action to fix the problem.

Tower Automotive attempted a quick fix of the non-reporting and/or incorrect reporting by threatening the out-of-country managers. The threat was that if the reports were not correctly and timely produced, then their bonuses would be affected. Although, this threat may have worked in the United States it did not work in other countries. In fact, the non-reporting and incorrect reporting continues.

The next step for Tower Automotive is to reevaluate the situation and for a more convoluted or a more intricate action to solve the problem. Convoluted action is not a compact action; it is a fragmented, extended, iterative, interrupted and delayed action (Browne, et al., 2003, pg. 141).
There are also three characteristics analyzed when considering a convoluted action. These characteristics are that the decision process is relatively long, there are multiple parties involved, and there is an extensive search (Browne, et al., 2003, pgs. 141-143). A convoluted action takes a very long time, often months or sometimes years and not resolved at one sitting. A Convoluted action also involves many different people. This means that the progress of solving the problem is made by multiple interest groups and that the progress will be interrupted, delayed and, sometimes waylaid before a solution is found (Browne, et al., 2003, pg. 143). Finally, a convoluted action involves an extensive search. This involves a long-term development of an original solution, sometimes going through authorization loops that generate large amounts of information as to the aspects of the problem (Browne, et al., 2003, pg. 143).

Tower Automotive is currently in the process of using a convoluted action to resolve the non-reporting and incorrect reporting for the newly created operational metrics program. The program started in January of 2002 and the quick acting resolution failed to work. It is now in the month of March 2003 and the problem has not been corrected. Thus, this procedure is taking a relatively long time. Further, multiple parties have now been included to help resolve this issue. Many different American managers and the Board of Directors have been notified along with many of the foreign country’s managers and staff. Finally, an extensive search is being conducted on the best way to influence the foreign county personnel to correctly and timely respond. This search is now including the help of specialists who research the operations, influences, incentives, and penalties for noncompliance of the personnel in foreign countries.

When Tower Automotive initiated the operational metrics program, managers had not anticipated the problems that it would create. However, the program is in place and is believed it will help with the overall continuation of the safe business practices at Tower Automotive. So, Tower will have to find a way to have the managers in foreign countries assist the American managers in the correctly finalized reports to the Board of Directors. This process is taking longer than anticipated and it is much more complicated than projected. However, Tower Automotive is optimistic in seeking a solution.

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