Friday, December 23, 2011

The Classical Approach to Decision-Making

The classical approach is described in a three step process:
1. You collect all possible choices for your definition. Identify what are possible solutions and review what will happen, if you choose one of these consequences. At the end of the first step, you should have a list of all viable options.
2. Now rank the options. Use your personal preferences to guide you through these options. At the end of this step, you have a ranked list of options, with the best option on the top of the list.
3. Now select the best alternative, which should be the one on the top of the list. This should lead you to the future that you wanted to have.

This process is a short summary of the overall process and contains a high level summary of your decision steps. The process is clearly directed at one person deciding and the description is very vague in many parts.

In my opinion, this process is to high a level to be helpful. Some of the key problems of decision making are not clearly addressed. Especially the ranking step is an easy description, but really hard to do. When you are done with the ranking, the third step is automatically done.

While the process is simple and right, it is not very helpful for many more complicated decisions. It is so generic, that you may always find it to be applicable, if you are able to rank the options.

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