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Approaches To Decision Making Theory Essay

1108 words - 5 pages


Laroche follows a prescriptive method in arguing for decision making theory. He argues it is a social representation which will improve decision making. In his abstract he writes “The paper argues that […] the concept of organizational action should not be opposed to decision and decision-making. Decision and decisionmaking are best understood as social representations […]. As organization members think and act in terms of decision-making, a theory of organizational action cannot simply do without a theory of decision-making. “ showing clearly that he is prescribing a certain way of looking upon decision-making. This is ...view middle of the document...

Decisions however are not always normative and thus although it is prescriptive and sometimes ‘constructed’ there may sometimes be impartiality with “distant familiarity” (Mattheu 1986) to dissociate.



Gond and Cabantous write in their abstract that “we approach rational decisionmaking as performative praxis” and “develop a performative praxis framework that explains how theory, actors, and tools together produce rationality within organizations through three mechanisms: rationality conventionalization, rationality engineering, and rationality commodification”. They here show that they are after describing the mechanisms associated with decision-making, not saying which way is the best or worst way to make decisions, hence being descriptive. Gond and Cabantous note that at times “rationality remains elusive”. They conceptualise rational decision making as performative praxis, “a set of decision making activities that turns rational choice theory into social reality” and comparatively to Laroche is descriptive on how decisions are ‘done’ from being ‘made’. Legitimisation and commodification for example play a role in the decision. Interactions promote a specific form of rational decision making. Thus rationality

being manufactured.


Laroche’s view on decision making is to a big extent constitutive according to what he presents about the concept of social representation - the practical way of thinking about and understand our surroundings. This can be applied in the every-day life in organizations, where decisions provide identity to actors. Constituity is the way of creating reality, to shape your surroundings, and leaders in organisations thus take decisions to justify that they are leaders and that their subordinates are followers. In the constitutive view on decision making the decision making becomes a tool to provide identity for actors and also to provide meaning to activities; by taking a decision that a meeting should be held and gathering employees to it, the employees can already expect what will happen on the meeting (eg discuss a problem and come up with a solution). By calling a meeting you also set the agenda for what is happening in the organization. This sort of decision making and decision processes help reduce uncertainty since the decisions become self-fulfilling prophecies. Cabantou and Gond’s article is to the greater extent performative written, examining the idea of rational decision making as...

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