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Problem Solving / Decision Making. Kepner-Tregoe The New Rational Manager Chapter 1. Chapter 1 Contents. Organizational Effectiveness Four Basic Patterns of Thinking Basic Patterns in an Organizational Context Some Thoughts on Teamwork Applying the Model Rational Management.

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problem solving decision making

Problem Solving /Decision Making


The New Rational Manager

Chapter 1

chapter 1 contents
Chapter 1 Contents
  • Organizational Effectiveness
  • Four Basic Patterns of Thinking
  • Basic Patterns in an Organizational Context
  • Some Thoughts on Teamwork
  • Applying the Model
  • Rational Management
organizational effectiveness
Organizational Effectiveness
  • Sadly, most of organizations today do not operate as integrated enterprises
    • disparate effectiveness & efficiency
    • overlaps & gaps
    • lack of communication
    • synergism & counter productivity
kepner tregoe
  • K-T have been in the business of organizational improvement for over 30 years
  • Our text documents the results of K-T’s experience in this area through research, trial, error, and innovation
    • management skills
    • installation
k t s groups vs teams
K-T’s Groups vs Teams
  • Groups are characterized by:
    • understanding
    • sensitivity
    • adaptation
    • common regard
    • psychological benefit
  • There is a closeness and an intention to be mutually supporting
k t s groups vs teams1
K-T’s Groups vs Teams
  • By contrast, Teams are characterized by:
    • varying expertise
    • varying methods
    • common goal
    • “tolerate one another enough to work closely together”
  • The goal is “to win” not necessarily to become friends
a management team
A Management Team
  • Entrepreneur - aggressive, driven, quick
  • Finance - analytically focused, thorough
  • Sales - enthusiastic, sometimes impatient
  • R&D - balance between feasible and desirable
  • Production - reality driven
the paradox
The Paradox
  • We need this diversity on a management team to provide the necessary expertise to make the organization successful.
  • BUT, with so many different mindsets, how can we coordinate their efforts in an effective and efficient way.
the k t solution
The K-T Solution
  • We need simple, common, sensible guidelines and procedures expressed in commonly understood language.
    • for gathering, sharing, and using information
    • for solving problems
    • for making decisions
    • for protecting the organization’s future
a big plus to the k t approach
A BIG Plus to the K-T Approach
  • Skills for good PS/DM are transferable
    • sports team analogy (W pg 3; B pg 15)
    • unnamed case example (W 4-5; B 16-17)
    • Installing Rational Process case (W 5-6; B 17-18)
the human nature aspect
The Human Nature Aspect
  • People generally resist change
  • BUT, people will embrace change that seems good for them and the things they care about.
  • A system for change must
    • facilitate introduction of ideas
    • provide means for implementation
    • offer rewards
four basic patterns of thinking
Four Basic Patterns of Thinking
  • READ & THINK CAREFULLY about what this overhead says - it is the crucial foundation of the K-T approach.
  • EVERY productive activity is related to one of four basic patterns of thinking.

(1) What is going on?

(2) Why did this happen?

(3) Which course of action should we take?

(4) What lies ahead?

the four thinking patterns just how important are they
The Four Thinking Patterns Just How Important Are They?
  • These four patterns have not altered substantially since the emergence of the human race.
  • They are universally applicable to any situation.
  • Survival is guaranteed by the ability to use these patterns.
what is going on assessing and clarifying
What Is Going On?Assessing and Clarifying
  • This is the most important thinking pattern
  • It allows us to examine a confusing situation and:
    • assess
    • clarify
    • sort out
    • impose order
why did this happen relating cause to effect
Why Did This Happen?Relating Cause to Effect
  • Assign meaning to what we observe by relating events to outcomes.
  • Assign meaning by relating causes to effects.
  • Allows us to move from reactive to proactive.
which course of action making choices
Which Course of Action?Making Choices
  • Allows us to make reasoned choices.
  • Three major activities are involved:
    • Determination of purpose
    • Consideration of available options
    • Assessment of relative risks
what lies ahead anticipating the future
What Lies Ahead?Anticipating The Future
  • This future oriented thinking allows us to imagine and construe the future.
  • Closely related to the cause and effect thinking pattern.
  • There is much unfulfilled potential in this area.
the four basic rational processes
The Four Basic Rational Processes
  • Applying the four basic thinking patterns in an organizational setting leads to systematic procedures for using and sharing information about organizational concerns.
  • Known as the 4 basic rational processes, they are universally applicable regardless of cultural setting or content.
the four basic rational processes1
The Four Basic Rational Processes
  • Situation Appraisal (Chapter 7)
    • What is Going On?
      • Breaks down complex into components
      • Separates relevant from irrelevant
      • Sets priorities and delegates responsibilities
    • Identifies
      • Problems to be solved
      • Decisions to be made
      • future events to be analyzed
the four basic rational processes2
The Four Basic Rational Processes
  • Problem Analysis (Chapters 2 & 3)
    • Why Did This Happen?
      • Based on the cause-and-effect thinking pattern
    • Enables us to:
      • identify, describe, analyze, and resolve
      • situation in which something has gone wrong without explanation
    • Methodical means to extract relevant and useful information about a situation
the four basic rational processes3
The Four Basic Rational Processes
  • Decision Analysis (Chapters 4 & 5)
    • Which Course of Action?
      • Based on the choice-making thinking pattern
    • Methodical means to examine:
      • the purpose of the decision
      • the available options
      • the risks of each alternative
the four basic rational processes4
The Four Basic Rational Processes
  • Potential Problem (Opportunity) Analysis (Chapter 6)
    • What Lies Ahead?
      • Based on the anticipating the future thinking pattern
    • Methodical means to:
      • avoid possible negative consequences
      • turn situations to our advantage
the two remaining chapters
The Two Remaining Chapters
  • Chapter 8
    • Application of Rational Management to human performance problems
  • Chapter 9
    • Installing Rational Management within an Organization
team work
Team Work
  • All people possess the capacity to utilize the four basic thinking patterns
    • they are not necessarily used automatically
    • they are not all used equally well
    • they are not easily shared
  • We need to:
    • Raise the level of skill in thinking
    • Enhance the ability to share these skills
team work1
Team Work
  • If you have not read the Hunting and Gathering case (W 16-18; B 27-29), be sure you do.
    • It is an interesting discussion of the rise and fall of team work.
applying the model
Applying the Model
  • We need:
    • a means to act as a team and yet maintain individuality
    • a means which can be used regardless of content
    • accurate communication with common understanding
    • PS/DM based on facts and data
rational management
Rational Management
  • Rational Management means making full use of the thinking ability of the people in an organization
    • continuing process
    • individual payoff is great / organizational payoff is far greater
    • major change / major commitment
    • conscious use of common approaches expressed in simple, common language