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Problem Formulation - Brightday Decision-Making Process

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Problem Formulation and Identification

The decision-making process is essential for any organization. The concepts and principles organizations use to determine its process is greatly dependent on the critical thinking of those making the decisions. The following will outline several processes used by organizations. It will explain the strengths and weaknesses of each process, as well as the steps considered most favorable. It will also describe the best process to identify and describe a problem to stakeholders.

Brightday Decision-Making Process

Construction companies make decisions that effect a project's completion date. The most important decisions include when to start a project, when to deliver materials, and when to mobilize the construction crew. The decision-making process at Brightday Construction is not very complicated. The organization determines its process by watching daily weather reports. During the winter and spring, the weather can be a major problem for construction companies and workers. The economic impact on the company and workers makes it tremendously hard to pay bills and put food on the table. This time of year, companies get creative with income producing projects.

For example, the company would delay any roofing or remodeling jobs if the weather report determines that there is a possibility of snow on Friday. In order to complete the project, the workers would need to complete the roof during early morning on Tuesday. The project supervisor will determine the timeframe for the project, the timeframe to get the materials delivered, and availability of the workers. All three factors must work well together. If the supervisor starts the roofing project and it is not completed, then the ceiling and interior walls could be damaged. Brightday Construction would have to cover the expenses for replacement, thus creating more work. In this scenario, the company will decide to continue watching the weather reports and delay the start date until weather conditions are better.

The strength of this decision-making process is that a project supervisor will not start a project unless all the required factors are available. This prevents a supervisor from guessing or relying on suppliers to deliver materials. A weakness is that the decision-makers rely on weather reports that could be inaccurate. The process is a great risk taken in order to generate income during less favorable working month.

Non-Profit Decision-Making Process

At a nonprofit organization, the decision-making process is to discuss the problem with those involved, consult someone with corporate memory, propose several options, and allow upper-level management to make the final decision. This process works very well to protect donor dollars and maintain the organization's mission. All decisions, regardless of level of importance, go through this process. The first discussion is among those affected and the immediate supervisor or manager. Usually, they will discuss the problem or issue after something happens or to prevent something from happening. The discussion may take place by e-mail or an informal meeting.

Most organizations have at least one employee who has been employed several years longer than others have. Therefore, it is usually best for anyone to consult these individuals for their corporate memory. They usually have encountered the situation and can remember the outcome. They are also very good at being able to provide some sort of documentation. Employees with corporate memory are considered for even the smallest decisions. They are always able to explain the reasons the organization operates in such a way.

At this point, employees involved and their direct supervisor or manager will discuss probable options with outcomes before requesting action from upper management. This process is important because upper management usually will not have time to research the issue. They rely only on what is presented to them. They ask questions, but it is up to the presenter to have the answers. This step is only used when the upper management team operates under an open door policy and everyone knows one another very well.

The final step is simply allowing upper management to make a decision. This final decision may be instant or could take a year or more. Most decisions take a very long time if it involves changes to the organization's policy and procedures. These decisions are taken before the Board of Directors.

The strength of this organization's decision-making process is that those with more experience are asked simply how problems have been approached in the past. They can offer their input on what has or has not worked in the past. However, this can



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