Logic of making managerial decisions, Introduction, Logical...

Logic of making managerial decisions


A great success is made up of a multitude of foreseen and considered trifles.

In. O. Klyuchevsky

Projecting their future, each of us thinks of it in the form of a certain set of options, since it is hopeless to live only on one prospective scenario. All of them differ not only in their importance (utility), but in the likelihood of their implementation. At the same time, a person seeks to construct such a multitude of alternatives, which would include an alternative with the highest probability, i. E. ideally would indicate a valid event. We want to know the outcome of our assumptions, plans, decisions. There is not a single scientist who does not want to have the true set of hypotheses put forward. There is not a single player who does not dream about making his bets correct. Pet is not a single entrepreneur who does not seek the most profitable promotion of his product in the market. There is not a single lawyer who does not seek to find the right solution to a contentious legal issue. In other words, each person intuitively or consciously strives to fulfill the criterion of completeness. This aspiration is realized in the course of planning activities, by taking decisions. Decisions can be free or forced. But in any case, they should be accepted.

In this case, the behavior of people in the course of decision-making can not be reduced to a once-and-for-all worked out sequence of actions. Sometimes, in interaction with a complex problem, a detailed and thorough assessment of the situation is necessary, and often a quick glance is sufficient. Sometimes you should create a vast, but only a sketchy image of the situation, and sometimes you need to pay much attention to detail. In some cases, it takes a lot of time and energy to plan, and sometimes it's generally better to omit it. Sometimes, before acting, you need a full rational clarification of your own goal, and sometimes you have to act, relying on intuition. At times it is more valuable to think figuratively, and sometimes - analytically. It is often necessary to wait and watch, and sometimes it is wiser to do something faster.

In management, there is no "magic wand" that allows you to find the right solution in a variety of real-life situations. The task is to think about and make the necessary and unmistakable actions at the right time, in the current situation.

Logical-semantic analysis of management activities

Human behavior can be unconscious (passions, skills, habits, affects) and conscious if you have to plan your actions in advance. Psychologists note that consciousness turns on when stereotyped, patterned behavior becomes inefficient, unable to lead to the desired goal. In this case, you have to think about the steps to be taken.

Logic is designed to help streamline our thoughts and actions, which becomes especially important in the field of decision-making. In this regard, the logical and semantic analysis of the structure of managerial activity is important, the main elements of which are: procedure, purpose, means, motive.

Action is a form of human activity that is subordinate to the realized goal and the ways to achieve it. Actions can be simple, representing links in the path to the goal, and complex, representing some interconnected and orderly in a set of simple actions.

Program of actions (management program) a targeted influence of the subject on the management object with the aim of streamlining, preserving the qualitative specifics, improving and developing the latter in the desired direction. The program includes the planning, organization, regulation and control of ongoing processes. Absence of the program leads to unbalanced actions, to illogical steps and, accordingly, to errors in management activity. A prerequisite for success is a well-thought-out and valid program of actions to achieve the goal. Its managerial program finds its concretization in the plans of activity.

Plan is a system of descriptive (describing) and prescriptive (prescriptive) statements about the objectives of the impact on the management object and effective ways to achieve them. Each plan, firstly, is expressed in the form of a natural language, which makes it generally available and universally valid for executives and executors. Secondly, it contains exhaustive information about the stages of the solution of the problem, the means and ways to achieve the goal. The plan prescribes: who, what, when and how should do.

The plans are divided into strategic, operational and tactical, depending on the nature of the tasks to be accomplished, the level of management, the estimated terms of achievement. From the point of view of the prospects for the existence and development of the organization, strategic plans have a special significance for its life. The word strategy came from the Greek strategos ("art of the general"). The military origin of the term should not be surprising. Its content has long gone beyond military use.

The strategic plan should be based on a solid information base, based on extensive research and factual data. To compete effectively in today's business world, an enterprise must constantly collect and analyze a huge amount of information about the industry, competition and other factors.

Strategically, the plan opens the prospect for the enterprise, allows you to competently build personnel policy, attract prospective employees, helps to profit from the sale of products and services.

Strategic plans should be designed so that not only remain intact for long periods of time, but also be flexible enough to be able to modify and reorient them if necessary. The strategic plan should be seen as a specification of the program that guides the firm's activities for an extended period of time. At the same time, one must realize that a dynamic, ever-changing business and social environment, often accompanied by conflicts, makes constant adjustments to plans unavoidable.

Together with the changes in the plans, accordingly, corrections are made to the space-time characteristics of the actions, in their scope and consistency, which is reflected in the concept of "procedure," which is close in content to the plan.

Procedure is the order of execution of actions aimed at achieving the final goal in accordance with the accepted program.

Aim is a preliminary presentation, an anticipation of the result of an action, a clear understanding of the image of the object that should appear in the future.

Goals can be characterized multifaceted. First of all, we must take into account that they identify the objective and logical goals.

Subject - goals related to the managed object in various fields of activity. There are goals of economic, social, political, humanitarian, medical, etc.

At the same time, allocate logical types of goals, i.e. their general characteristics that do not depend on the features of the managed object.

In terms of their logical valences, goals can be represented by the following varieties.

So, in the case of a simple general formulation of the goal with a slight disclosure of its content and connection with objective reality, the goal is considered abstract. With full disclosure of its content, taking into account the features of the object and the conditions of implementation, the goal is called specific.

Goals are described as general, private, and single, depending on what they mean: a class, a subclass of objects, or a separate object that is affected.

Depending on the level of cognition of the object, the characteristics of the subject of management, as well as the nature of communicative relations of individuals, the goals are well-considered and ill-conceived, understandable and incomprehensible, acceptable and unacceptable, etc.

By its importance, the goals are divided into main and secondary, essential and irrelevant, necessary and random.

According to the nature of the implementation, the goals are sequential and parallel, finite and intermediate. The ultimate, main, essential, necessary goal is the central link of the management program.

Pointless control does not exist. A necessary criterion for a concrete, realistic goal is its availability by means.

Tools - things, materials, resources that are used to achieve the goal.

The relationship of goals and means is a special, most complex form of determination in managerial activity, when their deep, dialectically contradictory interrelations and mutual transitions can be fixed. In some cases, the means determine the goals, and we are dealing with the processes of goal-setting, target design. In others, the goal directs analysis and choice of means, and we talk about expedient activities.

In the most general sense, the formulation of any goal is related to the need to answer three questions.

First, what needs to be done? This question fixes the objective aspect of the goal. Its solution involves transforming the subject in the desired direction, obtaining the intended final result.

Secondly, based on what you need to act? Here we clearly see the connection of the goal with the means of its achievement in the process of transforming the object.

Thirdly, what do you need to act for? This question captures the motivational aspect of the goal.

If the first two questions link the objective to the objective circumstances within which it is promoted and which ensures its achievement, then the third question focuses on the subjective beginning, i.e. on motivation (for the sake of what it is necessary to act). This motivation is not directly in the object, it is determined purely by the individual characteristics and abilities of the subject.

Motive is an internal stimulus, an incentive to action. It is connected with certain needs and vital interests of a person, a collective, an organization. One and the same need can be satisfied in different ways, so different, alternative goals can correspond to the same motive. At the same time, the same goal can be motivated in different ways.

It should be borne in mind that in a number of cases the motives become dominant. The desire to satisfy some need is so strong that it threatens with disagreement both with objectively developed circumstances (subject of activity) and with available or admissible means. The need ceases to be reasonable. The meaning of activity, including management, is reduced to "spur" events, the imposition of speculative, far from objective reality schemes. In economic, political, social life, we are witnessing how, for this reason, some development programs turned out to be bankrupt, soon forgotten and thrown out "to the dump of history".

The essence of the solution is, in the most general sense, a conscious act of behavior, the choice between different ways to achieve the goal, based on a comparison of their possible consequences.

It is believed that the decision-making stages in classical form were described by a prominent representative of the philosophy of pragmatism and its new variety - instrumentalism by the American philosopher D. Dewey (1859-1952). He distinguished three such stages: 1) first we determine the problem that must be solved; 2) then we construct (invent) alternative ways of accomplishing the task and 3) choose the best alternative.

At the first stage of the wording (identification) of the problem, there is a comprehension of what we want to achieve, why and how we should strive to achieve the corresponding goal. In this case, clarity, clarity, consistency, consistency and validity of reasoning are important. Judge W. Clark once deserved the favorable favor to him from US President Reagan by proposing a "mini-memorandum" to explain to the first person of the state the essence of any problems, no matter how complex they are. This mini-memorandum contained four paragraphs: the first contained the nature of the problem, the second contained facts, the third contained different opinions and the fourth contained recommendations on how to proceed.

The most laborious is the second stage of the decision, because it requires the manifestation of the creative abilities of a person, his experience, intuition, desire, possibilities. The presence and degree of manifestation of these subjective qualities to a large extent predetermines the likelihood of future events. However, in the decision-making process, it is necessary to take into account the influence of objective circumstances that do not depend on the subject. They also significantly predetermine the likelihood of choosing an option for behavior.

Depending on the combination of probabilities, the influence of objective and subjective factors distinguish decision making under conditions of complete certainty, limited certainty, uncertainty and groundless decisions.

A decision under conditions of complete certainty is taken when it is known with certainty which of the events will occur. Such decisions are made confidently. For example, the days and hours of work of a store are reliably known, and we know the schedule of its work. In this case, the decision to visit the store can be made with full certainty.

A decision under conditions of limited certainty is taken when none of the events is reliable, but the probabilities of their occurrence are known. For example, when going on a trip, we, after listening to the weather forecast, learned that the possibility of rain is unlikely. For us, this is an objective probability. But at the same time, we can doubt the officially announced forecast, in its own way, estimate the probability of rain. A typical decision-making situation with risk arises.

A decision under uncertainty is taken when neither objective nor subjective probabilities of events are known. For example, wanting to buy a product whose consumer properties we do not have any preliminary information, we make a decision in conditions of uncertainty. A similar situation arises if a decision has to be made in a conflict situation. Here for us are not clear not only the probabilities of objective events, but also the probability of behavior of another subject. The latter can act subtle and even insidious. In this case, alternatives are developed taking into account the retaliatory moves of both rivals.

As it was already noted, in the theory of decisions sometimes there are unsubstantiated decisions. At first glance, it seems worthless to point out such a species in the general classification of this phenomenon. In fact, what is the value of these decisions and who needs them? However, if you do not turn a blind eye to reality, you can not help noticing that such solutions are not so rare. Among the more or less understandable acts of behavior, there are some that are erroneous in choosing which methods of achieving the set goal. do not have any objective grounds. They can be caused by various reasons of objective and subjective order: lack of necessary information; professional incompetence; erroneous methodology of thinking; limited life experience; the complexity of decision making in conflict situations, when there are several stakeholders, each of which seeks to get the maximum win not only in fair competition, but also by introducing the competitor into error, etc. All this makes it fragile or even destroys the foundation on which the solution must be built. In this case, the value of the chosen option is zero and, perhaps, even harmful. The only consolatory moment here is that a critical thinker will extract at least some benefit from his own error.

The third stage of decision making is the most responsible, as it is related to choosing the best available alternative, and this is always a risk. A reasonable choice is to, first, evaluate the possible outcomes, consequences, results, which will result in each of the opportunities; secondly, to assess what their usefulness is. The utility of outcomes can be expressed in a variety of criteria: money, time, distance, weight, degree of desirability, etc. In this regard, the considerations of the American expert in the field of business theory, Professor Theodor Levit, are of interest. People, he says, do not consume things, but the expected benefits; not cosmetics, but the spells she promised; Do not drill a quarter-inch in diameter, but aperture of the same diameter; not company shares, but capital gains; not milling machines with numerical program control, but made without errors, carefully machined metal parts.

Utilities are evaluated as either positive (their value is expressed by numbers greater than the bullet), or as negative (their value is expressed by numbers less than zero), or as neutral (equated to zero). To evaluate the utility of outcomes means to reflect the degree of their subjective significance by a certain numerical scale.

When formulating recommendations on how to act, the main principle is the choice of the alternative that has the highest utility, that is, from the point of view of the subject, under the given objective conditions is most effective. The question is how to do this?

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