Models For Making Socially Responsible Decisions

Models For Making Socially Responsible Decisions

Models for Making Socially Responsible Decisions

There are four models for making socially responsible decisions which can be derived from the foregoing discussion of decision making under conditions of value conflict:

1 The equilibrium model

2 The incremental model

3 The computer model

4 The situational model

The strategic problem in making socially responsible decisions is how to choose among competing values. One way for the manager to deal with this problem is to attempt to maintain an equilibrium relationship among the welfare of the various groups affected by his decisions. This is the essence of the equilibrium model. Rather than set himself up as an expert on what is good for society, the manager views himself as an impartial umpire. His objective is to make decisions whose consequences are tolerable to each of the parties concerned.

This approach minimizes the importance of the manager's subjective evaluation of the values involved in a decision-making situation and obviates the necessity for him to rank them. It is a political rather than a moral approach to decision making. The manager assesses the impact of the decision on various groups and selects the alternative which on balance will be received with the least dissent. The criterion of a good decision is lack of overt conflict.

The advantage of such an approach is that the manager does not overestimate his capacity to deal with complex problems of value interpretation and evaluation. He assumes that the groups affected by his decision know more about its impact on their welfare than he does and will make their reactions known to him through regular channels. Management decisions at any moment of time bring into equilibrium relationship the interests of the groups involved. Any shift in power or other condition affecting the welfare of the groups will lead to a different emphasis in decision making. This is a practical approach. The manager may not know what is "right" in a given decision-making situation, but he is enough of a politician to be able to determine which alternative is likely to be most acceptable.

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