All 11 entries tagged Rdm

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May 02, 2011

it's difficult to select tools

It is quite difficult to select appropriate decision tools because there aren't only one rule in doing this. Different people have difference opinions towards this. Obviously, the selected tools must suitable for the problems, that is these tools is useful to solve out this kind of problems or under this kind of environment, these tools is effective. But this is not enough. The tools must also fit for the decision makers. In fact, it is the decision makers who choose the tools and use them. If they don't prefer or they aren't familiar with the tools, they aren't able to use it effectively. Sometimes, the feeling of boards must be considered. For example, AHP is criticized by the unclear results. The people who conducts it have no problem with how it be presented, however, if the boards do understand this tool at all, it will be difficult for them to understand it within several slides.


April 05, 2011

vote may not be an effective to make a good decision

Yesterday, we did an exercise and during that exercise we did what we used to do before: when we had different opinions towards an issue, we took the idea supported by the majority of people. This seems to be the most popular solution to solve conflicts in discussions. But the ideas may not be the best ones all the time. We didn¡¯t get some good results in some decisions though the decisions had been support by the majority of us or even all of us. The truth is always on the side of few man. Perhaps the sentence is a bit more extreme, but it sounds reasonable. Taking the majority's opinion is helpful to make a fair decision but it may not be an effective method in choosing the best ideas. I didn't see a more effective way to work out this situation. Almost every companies let the top manager to make the final decision or let the board to vote for the options even though no one can guarantee it will generate a good decision.


March 19, 2011

a little different, totally different

We used the same material, and some of the tools we selected were the same, and we were in the same class and listened to the same lectures and seminars. Almost all the things turned out to be the same, however, the decision we made for Waverider were different from each other. This definitely was an interesting topic. Even though a slight different in our thinking can lead to a big different in the final outcome. Even in one group, we had the arguments about choosing tools. Also, after the analysis, we had a lot of discussion about our decision while we got the same results in our analysis. Thus, I can imagine the different opinions in a company or even outside a company. Also, even one person, it is impossible for him to make the same decision in different situation or different time though he faces the same problem. Therefore, we make a decision today, but perhaps we want to change our opinion tomorrow. So I can see the importance of the word ¡°robust¡± and of course, it is fairly difficult to achieve robust.


different tools and bias

The recommendations of each group are different, either slightly or significantly because of different focuses. Some pay more attention on to the tangible costs and profits in the material while some groups stress more on potential costs and benefits. Even all the groups used decision tree as one of their decision tools, the results turn out to be different. One of the possible reasons could be the uncertainty information, for example, the probability of available chance in Llymingtom. Different solutions and ideas generate different approaches in analyzing this issue. Therefore, bias can¡¯t never be avoid no matter which tool is chosen. Everyone can use the same too in different ways and even in the same way, possibly the focuses are distinct, thus the results can¡¯t be same. Also, there was an interesting question raised yesterday, since we used more than one tools in analyze one decision, sometimes the results were totally incompatible. So can we say in this sense, bias can be reduced to a certain degree. However, as far as I see, if the results are confronted, bias may be reduced, for example, one kind of bias exists in one tool and a different kind of bias exists in the other tool. When the distinct results appear, people may start to think the reason or sometimes, they try to balance each other. In this case, bias could be reduced. But if different tools indicate the same results, that may not mean the outcomes are correct, perhaps in that situation, bias is strengthened. Every tool has the same bias and shows the same results. Thus, the above bias is easy to be ignored.


March 18, 2011

simple tools vs complex tools

Today, during the presentation, Jeff asked a group why they wanted to choose some simple tools instead of the complex ones. The answer is they wished to use simple tools which they could understood clearly. I definitely agree their opinion. Yes, we can read articles or books to gain more knowledge about tools to make decision. But it is impossible for us to learn enough ideas about complex tools. We used AHP, decision tree in our presentation but no one can say he/her already completed understood these tools. We chose them as we believed generally we learned something about them and we knew how to use it maybe just in one or two aspects. The simple tools, we can learn them and understand them easily and clearly. Thus, it is impossible that we use them with mistakes, perhaps there are a few, but just only a few. However, even if complex tools may result in a much robust decision usually if we use them correctly. But since the complex and difficult in adopting then tools, it is easy to misuse them and thus come out a terrible decision without noticing it by ourselves. So in my opinion, only if I am quite sure about the utilization of a tool, I won¡¯t pick any one unless I have enough time and resources to learn it. 


quantitative and qualitative

Both quantitative and qualitative data are important to a company in decision making. However, only quantitative data can use more technical tools such as simulation, AHP, decision tree. Unless the qualitative data has been ranked or valued, the above technical tools cannot be adopted. May be these tools do not turn out to be more scientific than the others, but at least they appear so. What I want to doubt is that do these technical methods tend to be more effective and correct in decision making. Of course, using mathematical analysis tools to analyze some data will make a decision sounds more convinced because the result is more accurate compares to only using some simple tools that contain many biases. But can we say more accurate result leads to a better decision or is it mathematical analysis more accurate? Because of the limited energy, time and cost, we can¡¯t conclude all possible factors or criterias. Therefore, the outcome of the mathematical analysis is only based on the limited elements. It isn¡¯t completed at all. In contrast, when analyzing qualitative, it is usually not easy to do maths processing so that this kind of analysis may contain more biases than quantitative analysis. Even though we only list some limited aspects again, but when we valuing them subjectively, sometimes we tend to combine these issues with other elements or situation unconsciously. In this case, perhaps the scope of our thinking is wider and we consider more aspects in our decision making.


March 16, 2011

bias always exists

So far we have almost finished our ppt, however, there are still so many arguments about the finial decision. For example, we use different tools to analyze one issue, but sometimes, the results are different according to the tools. Different tool have different focus, or it can say we use them with different focus. Decision tree is an effective to calculate the profit while grid analysis is useful in identifying the strengths of the factories without considering the cost. Therefore, we must make balance of them or we may say which aspect is more important. Then bias occurs as we should choose one of the decisions in our own opinions.

Also, it is unlikely that we can avoid bias. Ahp seems more scientific, but there are many biases exist when we are deciding the criterias and then comparing them. And smart, may be I can say biases exist in it from the beginning to the end when it is being used. Every tool has a lot of biases, however, bias doesn¡¯t destroy these tools so much as they are always considered as effective tools if used appropriate. Obviously, bias can cause problems and arguments all the time. In contrast, there¡¯s another voice that claims bias can serve as the shortcut in some circumstance, for example, reasoning by analogy and confirmation bias. Besides, sometimes, perhaps bias is more accurate and effective than calculation. Who knows.


March 14, 2011

too much information may cause problems

When we were in the team work, we thought that it was difficult to make the robust decisions because the information is so limited. It is easy to imagine that the lack of information and knowledge definitely serves as a block in decision making. Firstly, the less information we obtain, the less analysis and calculation we can make, and thus the less effective decisions we may choose. Secondly, in real practice, when we feel that we have got enough information and knowledge, sometimes we don¡¯t want to start to make a decision. Also, most of the time, we try to search for more information and learn more knowledge in order to make ourselves confident. However, we usually waste a lot of time in this research and learning and no one can guarantee the more information and knowledge we gain, the better outcome we obtain. Perhaps we miss an excellent opportunities when we were in the research. Therefore, it is necessary that people should get used to make decision without enough information and knowledge as it is impossible for us to always get everything we want.

In the contrast, sometimes too much information can cause problems, too. Most of the time, the budget of a project is limited and we can¡¯t try to analysis all the information. Also, process based analysis is time consuming work. Time is money so that it is not allowed to spend so much time in decision making. In addition, our energy and ability is too limited to analyze all the data. Besides, since there are a large number of information, it is not easy to decide which are more important and more correct, and thus difficult to decide which data we should use.


March 13, 2011

rdm interacts with other courses

Robust decision making has many connections with some other courses and has a wider scope than the courses we¡¯ve learned such as six sigma, leadership and financial analysis. Or to be more exactly, these courses all contribute and affect robust decision making. For example, six sigma and financial analysis are effective methods in making a decision. We can say these methods can¡¯t improve the development of a company directly as they are just the tools in analyzing the situations and problems. Only after making decisions according to results of analysis that a company may gain improvement. Leadership, which usually considered as the most important element in quality management, plays a significant role in making a decision. Different types of leadership can generate different kinds of approaches in decision making. Leaders who enjoy the competition in business tend to make a more aggressive decision while conservative leaders always prefer a less risk decision. CBE has the widest scope in our courses so far and robust decision making is only a part of CBE. A appropriate robust decision assists to the excellent business. However, all these philosophies, methodologies and approaches share the same ultimate purpose: quality management.


March 12, 2011

it's time consuming

Today I read an article that states sleep deprivation sets people up for risky decision-making. Therefore, we can see there are many factors influence on making a decision even though the lack of enough sleep. I agree processed based system is helpful to make a more objective decision, however, it is impossible to make every decision on the basis of system analysis. This kind of decision is time consuming and costly. What¡¯s more, even the data suggests a direction of a decision, we should decide whether we should trust the result or not, this is kind of a subjective decision. Most of the time, we collect data and try to use scientific tools and approaches in order to make a more convinced decision. But it is unavoidable to make decision by our intuition through our past experiences, feelings and thinking. Just as the tools we select to use, we decide it by ourselves subjectively. In addition, it is impossible to make every decision through carefully consideration. I remember a joke which indicates the more you consider doesn¡¯t mean the more you gain. For instance, a bullet flies towards you, the first thing you should do is trying to escape from it instead of calculating its accelerated velocity. In some emergent cases, time is not allowed you to do some analysis before deciding. In this case, only intuitive decision works.


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  • every tools has its specifics..however…they are not away from limitations…i believe two or more … by on this entry
  • yes, I agree wiki supports knowledge sharing, but not all the time. In KBAM, it did. Because we had … by on this entry
  • I agree with you, Vagelis. So that's why I said it's important to judge which one is more effective.… by on this entry
  • Hiii Lucy, yeah I feel the same as wel! in LE and RDM my team was rarely use wiki since we had meeti… by on this entry
  • You may wish to consider that in real life as a manager of an organization meetings like the one we … by on this entry

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