Leadership Importance: Decision-Making Processes

Introduction

Organizations always entrust managers with the responsibility of leading the employees based on effective decisions. However, to be an effective leaders, it is necessary for a manager to perform certain interpersonal roles such as being a leader, informational, and motivational roles. In addition, an organisation can perform effectively if the manager is able to use the decision making guidelines such as identifying a problem and creating objectives to address the problem, among other approaches.

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Different roles which a manager has to perform to be an effective leader

Interpersonal Roles

The roles that a manager should perform to be an effective leader are summarised as interpersonal roles because of the nature of their work. The leadership roles within that category are figurehead, being a spokesperson, a disturbance handler, liaison, resource allocator, and an entrepreneur. However, an effective manager can only be successful as a leader by using organisational resources such as physical and financial to effectively influence the behavior of followers (Charan, Drotter, & Noel, 2010).

According to Sullivan and Garland (2010) a manager acts as an effective leader by fulfilling task objectives, directing employees to work in groups to address the needs and expectations of customers. Charan et al. (2010) argue that a manager plays an important role as a leader by creating effective teams to work to achieve organisational goals.

Leadership roles

Here, the leadership roles consist of guiding the followers and liaising with others to act as a figurehead for the organisaiton. Acting as a figurehead is necessary because of the formal authority. On the other hand, the leadership role is to bring the entire working group under the control of the organisation.

A manager who is an effective decision maker should be characterised by entrepreneurial skills, should be an effective negotiator, and able to handle conflicts amongst team members, and have the ability to allocate organisational resources effectively (Charan et al., 2010).

The interpersonal roles are done by providing guidance to the employees at different management levels, creating the right communication channels and frameworks to share information by collecting feedbacks to guide employees in decision-making (Charan et al., 2010). In addition, a manager can be an effective leader by creating frameworks and structures for motivating employees and coordinating managerial efforts at the strategic, tactical, and operational levels.

Informational role

On the other hand, the informational role is necessary function for a manager because it entails monitoring the internal and external environment and formulating strategies to address the problems that arise (Sullivan & Garland, 2010). In addition, the role entails communicating or disseminating information to the entire organisation.

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Recruitment Roles

Other roles include recruiting, training, directing, monitoring, and negotiating with employees. The process of leading and managing for today and for the future becomes effective if the key component of communication is used correctly (Schein, 2010). A communication framework consists of both positive and negative politeness and making positive sense of information (Schein, 2010). Besides communicating with the employees, the manager has to create vision and mission statements to inspire employees and shareholders to work towards the success of the organisation.

Guidelines for managers for making effective decisions

Identifying the cause of a problem

Decision-making is a “process that guides managers to respond to opportunities and threats by analysing options and making decisions about goals and the courses of action to take” (De Bruijn & Ten Heuvelhof, 2010, p.3). The guidelines for making effective decisions include identifying and framing the problem, determining the decision-making criteria, setting out objectives, analysing alternatives, implementing the alternatives, and evaluating the results (Freeman, 2010).

The practical guidelines enable the manager to improve their practical thinking skills and the way they think about the problems. In addition, it is important for a manger to assess the prevailing circumstances within an organisation to be able to make the effective decisions (Jones, 2010). Once the circumstances have been analysed, it is easy to create a problem statement that could be used to identify a solution to the underlying problem.

Alternative solutions

By applying self-reflection, the manager should express the problem statement in a way that provides alternative solutions and methods to solve the problem. However, alternative solutions must be evaluated to determine the right solution for the problem (Jones, 2010). Among the proposed approaches is to think upstream to discover the right course of action.

However, to frame alternative solutions, the manager needs to specify the criteria for selecting the right alternatives. For instance, the right alternative can be made by assigning weights to each alternative. The weights can be expressed in terms of advantages and disadvantages of each alternative.

It is important to apply the best alternative by exploring possible solutions to implement the right decisions. However, each decision-making stage must define the decision-making process. The steps include orientation (members meet at the first time), conflict resolution (members make themselves familiar with the decision-making process), emergence (clarifying issues), and reinforcement (making decisions correctly) (Freeman, 2010). However, managers need to consult stakeholders before making the decisions that affect the operations of an organisation.

Objectives

After the problem statement has been defined, the manger should formulate objectives to guide the decision maker on how to achieve the right solutions to the problem (Jones, 2010).

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Clarifying the objectives enables the manager to communicate the right decisions to achieve. However, the objectives can be achieved by identifying and defining the characteristics of an effective decision.

Effective decisions

For a manager to make effective decisions, it is important for a manager to exercise discretion, show procedural fairness, give reasons for their decisions, and keep the records safe. Jones (2010) notes that the decision maker should use the correct information to make reliable decisions that affect the operations of the organisation. According to Jones (2010), effective decisions lead to better leadership and organisational performance.

Decision-making models

According to Freeman (2010), the three decision-making models that have been proposed for managers to use to make effective decisions are classical, administrative, and political. Classical models are important for the economic interests of the organisations, administrative models guide managers to make non-programmed decisions, and political models provide guidelines for making decisions that address the problems in the real environment.

Freeman (2010) argues that at this point, the manager applies practical reasoning to answer a standard set of questions that enable critical thinking in decision-making. The main questions to answer include what if, what is unexpected, so what, and what else to enhance the manager’s skills to become effective in decision-making.

Conclusion

For a managers to be an effective leaders, they should perform interpersonal roles, which include figurehead, entrepreneur, resource allocator, and a spokesman. That is besides being a leader who directs employees to perform various functions at different levels of the organisation.

In addition, the manager performs the recruitment role, which is important for an organisation to hire employees with the right skills and qualifications to fill vacancies that arise in the organization. However, to be an effective manager, it is necessary to follow certain decision making guidelines, which include identifying and expressing a problem in a statement that consists of various solutions from which a choice can be made and to formulate objectives to help solve the problem.

References

Charan, R., Drotter, S., & Noel, J. (2010). The leadership pipeline: How to build the leadership powered company. New York: John Wiley & Sons.

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De Bruijn, H., & Ten Heuvelhof, E. (2010). Process management: why project management fails in complex decision-making processes. New York: Springer Science & Business Media.

Freeman, R. E. (2010). Strategic management: A stakeholder approach. London: Cambridge University Press.

Jones, G. R. (2010). Organizational theory, design, and change. Upper Saddle River: Pearson.

Schein, E. H. (2010). Organizational culture and leadership. New York: John Wiley & Sons.

Sullivan, E. J., & Garland, G. (2010). Practical leadership and management in nursing. New York: Pearson Education.

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