4/21/2012

ANDREWS

DECISION MAKING II

Group 1
Akhil S. Pooja K. Harshul T. Mohit M. Shweta V.

Decide and action steps were performed in sync with the observation and performed multiple times till the decisions were final. we had to arrive at calculated well thought out decisions at every point of time and team consensus was paramount for a good performance. We were Team ANDREWS and the following illustrates our learning during the simulation: a) How do you think did your team capitalize on the learnings in DM-1 while doing the simulation in DM-2? Decision Making-I course exposed us to various ways of reaching to a consensus for better decisions in a group. well prepared and exhaustively laid out analysis was illustrated by the concerned team member. After the functional roles were allotted. The team made a conscious effort not to use voting as a decision making technique. Though each functional head questioned the other on their decisions and alternatives while evaluating them. Key takeaways incorporated and capitalized upon from Decision Making-I were as follows: -More Brains generate more ideas: The presence of all 5 team members at any point of time deemed more productive as compared to other times. During the Capsim Simulation.GROUP 1 TEAM ANDREWS This simulation supplemented the managerial decision-making concepts explored in the Decision Making I course. Also behavioral aspects of group dynamics came strongly into play during the course of this simulation that made it possible for us to better understand the challenges involved in working together as a team in the real business world. However. Orient. however. Decision Models There were no specific decision making models decided right from the beginning but eventually the OODA Decision Model was followed. as a phenomenon was consciously avoided. each one tried to be an expert in his or her domain. it involved understanding where our predictions about the market scenario and team product deviated from the actual picture. but also helped us in better correlation of our subject knowledge gained so far in various areas of management. From the beginning of the simulation. It not only enabled us to understand the interdisciplinary nature of a real business world. Group think. Though the observing broadly involved environmental study. the team was aware that group dynamics would play a critical role in decision making during the simulation. Each person was assigned a functional role and was expected to master the underlying working of the function. .

at all times avoid predictable errors. b) How could your team have better capitalized on the learning from DM-1 module As followed from our DM-1 learnings. We tried to draw the rational conclusions from the market results in general and our team performance in particular. One should maintain the same levels of energy in order to maintain consistent decision making skills. This was to check if we had digressed from the topic. had we incorporated the following key takeways from DM-I: Avoid predictable errors: One interesting takeaway from the DM-I course that would have helped us in our simulation performance was that we could. We as a team performed very specific mistakes. -Don’t be indecisive as a team: We would re-iterate the underlying intent of a discussion if it was dragged too far. E. Also. the decisions at times were not very rational in terms of gains and losses and more risk was taken at times when it was inappropriate. Long term strategy should not change based on results of previous rounds. Some of these predictable errors could be avoided by learning from other teams mistakes. human behavior experiment. This fluctuation in moods impacts effective decision making skills. we as a team could have better capitalized on our simulation. the point of a discussion is lost and this was done to avoid waste of time. Many a times. issues were prioritized and actions were taken accordingly. don’t get excited by good results and too dejected by bad results. most of which were predictable and we were in reality immune to a lot of evidence present in the Capsim Courier Reports. . -Good judgment from past experience and experience from comes from bad judgment: Learnt a lot of lessons the hard way but each time this message evidently presented itself. marketing and automation were never compromised upon. -Practical Wisdom: As the rounds progressed. TQM.g.-Communicate Decisions effectively: All decisions taken were communicated in the clearest manner which thereby left no scope for ambiguity. -Clear Objectives defined: Each member was responsible for a certain functional activity and all worked in sync simultaneously product-by-product to ensure all decisions were in sync with the final objective. Treat gains and losses in a rational manner: Like the learning from the monkey vs. The team members on the next day came more prepared with their individual homework done which facilitated the process better. -Draw the right conclusion from the past experiences: There was enough debate on what could be inferred by the previous performance on the team and where we went wrong.

accept it and improve it: Some of the times when a team members views weren’t incorporated or accepted. If that resulted in bad results. Shared Responsibility: Shared responsibility through the good and bad times. As our objective was not clearly defined.Avoiding Blame Games: We should have kept in mind that blame games were a waste of time. the team has to share the blame and work towards understanding what went wrong and rectifying it. Sometimes in the interest of time. A decision was taken after group consensus. The decision was not final unless everyone agreed. This should have been avoided as it was reiterated multiple times during instructions and learning. whether it involved groupthink or not. Use of moderator/facilitator: One person could have taken the role of a moderator to enable smooth functioning of the team. the team focused on their own performance and improvements in it from the last round. Judge the opinion. Make assumptions transparent and logical: Some of the implicit assumptions during the decision making were not questioned during decision making. and hence our discussions were about convincing the others about the logic of the idea. not the person: Our aim should have been to target the situation and not the person during the course of the simulation when things went wrong. Each action should reflect a move towards the long term objective. the decision to sell capacity to raise money was flawed. Effective Time Management: Sometimes lack of effective time management required us to take decisions fast. in order to avoid any new ideas that could contradict the group consensus and delay the decision further. But this happened only when the members decisions were backed by the required numbers. .g. our actions across some rounds had a flawed purpose and contradicted some of our initial goals. E. At such a point groupthink set in. Don’t react negatively to feedback. Don’t get mislead by ‘All is Well’ Syndrome: By not being able to study competition better and anticipate their moves. This means everyone had approved that decision. the decision to cut prices in the low segment so early on in the game was contradictory to our initial goal. This could have been discussed from the beginning and avoided during the course of time of the Simulation. Reaching to a consensus may not always lead to a good decision: All decisions required group consensus. This would have helped us identify our strategy and work towards it through the eight rounds. offence was taken and indifference followed. some members would give in so that we could move on. Long term Strategy and Objective: The team should have decided on a long term objective early on in the game. Instead one should invest that time to create contingency plans. Being prepared with actual math backing one’s argument would have helped make decisions faster and in time.

After 5 sessions we got hold of finance and started evaluating options and checking whether a certain amount of sales would help us achieve profits or not. This meant each had an opinion and nothing concrete to substantiate it with. We could have been more open to each other’s ideas rather than refuting it outright. For example even when our product was better placed and we had spent a huge amount on marketing and sales we were unable to lead the segment. We never knew this could impact the sales to such an extent. Analyzing how much to produce and gain market share was another challenge since initially we dint grasp the concept of Customer awareness and customer accessibility. We could have used a moderator to bring us to a consensus. c) Which aspects of the simulation did you find the most difficult to handle and why? The Simulation presented itself with surprises and challenges in each round and therefore always had us on our toes through all the rounds. Hence a lot of time was spent discussing alternatives with no effective conclusion.      . Linking data to grasp the difference in our product and competitor’s product was difficult initially. thereby making similar mistakes again. We did manage it after struggling initially. Since risk taking capabilities of individual group members differ we tried hard to convince each other to adopt a plan.Analysis to understand the root causes: We could have used some kind of decision making tools like Pareto Analysis or Blind Spot analysis to understand where we were faulting at each time. No one could back their suggestions by numbers. We were unable to figure out the net contribution of a product in the initial rounds since we had no knowledge how to deal with finance. Once we had retired the debt our bond rating and stock prices increased. Our approach was too conservative. This led to waste of time and hence we were left with 20 to 25 minutes only to deal with finances. The concept of retiring debt on time was another challenge. Some of the aspects of the Simulation were quite difficult to handle and are as follows:  The initial rounds were challenging as there was a lack of preparation on behalf of all team members. One of the most difficult parts to understand was the formulation of worst and best case scenario for a given amount of production. Once we had an emergency loan it was difficult to get out of the trap and work towards increased profits. We later realized that the market leader was ahead of us only because of greater number of AP days. We faltered once and got a big emergency loan since we couldn’t judge the bad affect of not spending in promo and sales.

Considering a Pareto analysis of the entire simulation most of the challenges were faced either due to lack of preparation or lack or due to the lack of proper comprehension of our analysis not only of our own performance. Sometimes it was a big challenge to even understand how the simulation is scoring us and after a few rounds that analysis was parked. there was something new to handle in the dynamically changing scenario of the industry as a whole. each time we thought we had mastered a certain aspect of the simulation. . in spite of instructions during classroom learning. but also of the competitors.All in all. Our fear and greed kept us from taking right decisions at all times.

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