Instructor’s Manual Chapter 3
MANAGERIAL DECISION MAKING
KEY STUDENT QUESTIONS
Managerial decision making in textbooks is heavily theory driven, and most students want to know more
about the practical ins and outs of day-to-day decision making.
Two questions drive a host of other
1. “How can I make good decisions?”
2.“How can I make sure I don’t fall into the decision-making traps you are
describing when you talk about things like psychological biases and
To make “good” decisions, students have to master the art of rational decision making, as
well as learning to recognize, avoid, and, if appropriate, use, common decision-making
Point out that while it is never possible to make the “perfect” decision - training in
these areas can help people to make better decisions.
A variety of practical suggestions for avoiding decision-making pitfalls can be found in the
example for Objective 3 in the “Class Roadmap.”
While these suggestions are not research
based, students will respond to their no-nonsense advice based on real-world experience.
CLASS PREWORK ASSIGNMENT OPTIONS
OPTION 1: PART 1 SUPPORTING CASE: SSS SOFTWARE IN-BASKET EXERCISE
Instructions and answers for the SSS Software In-Basket can be found at the end of this chapter of the
IM, or by clicking
OPTION 2: EXAMINING A DECISION
Prior to class, ask students to write a brief paragraph describing a problem they had within the past year
or two which required a major decision.
After describing the problem, students should make a list of all
the alternatives they considered prior to making a final decision.
Have the students use their problems
and decisions when answering Student Discussion Questions 2, 3, 5, 7, 11, and when discussing the
pitfalls people can encounter during the decision-making process.
One way of demonstrating both
brainstorming and the effects of group decision making in
large lecture sections is to divide students into small groups
of no more than five people.
Ask each person in the group
to briefly describe the problem they faced, without telling the
rest of the group what decision they finally made, Have the group pick a problem,
and brainstorm solutions, then, as a group, pick the best solution to the problem.
Then, the group should compare their decision with the decision of the person
who brought the problem to the group, and discuss the differences between the
solution proposed by the group and the solution developed by the individual.
this way, students can vividly see that group discussion/brainstorming tends to
generate more alternatives to a problem, and that groups are likely to develop
different solutions to problems than individuals.