Structuring the decision process

In A Leadership Perspective on Decision Making. Oslo: Cappelen Academic Publishers. pp. 97-120 (2010)
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This chapter includes a discussion of leadership decisions and stress. Many leaders are daily exposed to stress when they must make decisions, and there are often social reasons for this. Social standards suggest that a leader must be proactive and make decisions and not flee the situation. Conflict often creates stress in decision-making situations. It is important for leaders to understand that it is not stress in itself that leads to bad decisions, rather, bad decisions may be the result of time pressure in the sense that leaders have not been able to gather enough relevant information. Thus, it is worthwhile for leaders to be able to prioritize properly in order to cope with stressful situations. In some situations, a leader chooses to delegate the decisions to his/her team and then it is important to guard against «groupthink», a phenomenon where members of a team put consensus before anything else as a result of the peer pressure. A number of methods are presented that enable leaders to avoid this phenomenon. Often leaders are involved in decision-making situations where they are forced to navigate between objectives that are in strong conflict with each other. We are talking about «decision dilemmas». These are characterized by the existence of a conflict between the top leadership's desire to control the activities and their wish to give autonomy and independence to the various units. It is important for leaders to be able to strike a balance in different dilemma situations and understand how to best manage conflicts when they arise
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