April 12, 2013

RDM: Is there actually such a thing as a right decision?

Throughout our academic lifes, we have essentially been trying to find the right answer. This is particularly true for me, since my first degree was in mathematics, where there most definitely is one right solution. However, it was interesting that for our RDM presentation, we were told that that there is no right answer (in other words, there is no right decision). I know that all the groups went for lymington, but this was probably due to an over reliance on financial figures.

Strangely enough, even in many life experiences, there aren't many right answers. For example, deciding which car to purchase or which house to buy. These are important decisions. Nonetheless, it can be argued that there is no one right answer. For example, you can't say (in a matter of fact sort of way that) mercedez is the best car or this house will be the best to live in. The best you can do is make a good decision. This is where the decision making criteria comes in. By deciding which factors are the most important to you, you can make the most suitable decision. However, there is no reason why these factors that are used to evaluate the potential solutions can't change or evolve over time. A decision that was made some time back may not be the most apt choice now.

This is the essence of making a robust decision- i.e. the one that has the greatest chance of standing the test of time. We should remember that there will always be an element of uncertainty in any decision. In many cases (such as the in module work), we will have incomplete information. We have to manage that appropriately. Finally, we can only truly determine whether the decision we made was good after it has been implemented. Sadly, there is no way of ever really knowing if lymington or the chosen marketing mediums were the right choice. Nonetheless, we can definitely learn from our decision making process and next time make the most of any information we get.


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