Langley argues that unanimity may mean that a

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Unformatted text preview: ns, and normal checks and balances may be short-circuited. Langley argues that unanimity may mean that a proposal has strong value, but it may also be symptomatic of a disturbing trend, that is, a uniformity in which members share values and beliefs and that excludes deviation from the decision-making process. She concludes that whilst obviously a strong culture has many advantages, when the organisation is faced with discontinuities this same culture becomes a liability as common beliefs become invalid. Finally, contrary to both the above streams of results, Wooldridge and Floyd (1990) found no statistically significant relationship between consensus and organisational performance. Evidently then, the performance-consensus research has produced some conflicting results. This may be attributed to differences in units of analyses, in methodologies and research questions (Dess and Origer, 1987), or, perhaps, even to the nature and stage of the strategic process under investigation which may impact upon the scope, content and degree of consensus (Wooldridge and Floyd, 1990; Papadakis, 1998). More interestingly, Papadakis (1998) postulates that a lack of any significant relationship suggests the co-existence of two opposite effects that “cancel each other 36 out” in practice. Dean and Sharfman (1996) have argued that effective decisions must be based on organisational goals. Political decision processes are, by their very nature, organised around the self-interests of individuals or groups (Pfeffer, 1981; Pettigrew, 1973), which are often in conflict with those of the organisation. Therefore, it can be argued that good performers are less likely to exhibit less politics and less problem-solving disagreement in their decision-making process. This section has justified the assumptions that must hold in order to prove a link between investment decision process and effectiveness. It has reviewed those empirical studies that have focussed on the effects of comprehensiveness, rationality, formality and consensus in the decision-making process on organisational performance. It has provided evidence that using decision analysis means rationality, comprehensiveness, formality and increased consensus in investment decisionmaking. It therefore suffices to advance only one hypothesis for empirical testing in this thesis: organisational performance is positively related to use of decision analysis in investment appraisal decision-making. In answering the third research question, the researcher aims to investigate this proposition. The current study will use the indication of current capability and current practice gained from answering the first and second research questions to rank the companies according to the number of techniques used in their investment appraisal process. The research will then assume that any value added to the company from using a decision analysis approach, including any “soft” benefits, ultimately affects the bottom-line. This assumption will be justified in Chapter 7. It means that it is therefore permissible to us...
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