Decision making is a task which needs utmost balance on the part of the leader. One sided decisions when team input is necessary or resources going into a lot of group decision making process when the decision itself is not so crucial can turn out to be big result influencing part of the outcomes of a leadership experience. Leadership demands a lot of adaptability
where the style of leadership to be followed, a complete leader driven or group driven is to chosen based on the type of decision to be taken and the situation in which the decision is to be taken.
Leadership is the process whereby one person influences others to work towards a goal.(1)
The following are lot of leadership models that are currently in practice that assist a leader take decisions.
• Fiedler’s Contingency model.
• Hersey and Blanchard Situational model.
• House’s Path-Goal Model.
• Vroom-Jago Leadership Model
Vroom Jago leadership model is of Interest to us right now. Vroom Jago leadership model uses decision trees and tradeoffs for a arriving at a set of branched decisions. The Vroom Jago leadership model relates leadership behavior and participation to decision making. The model makes the leader pose him/her a series of questions to which yes or no would be the answer. After a series of questions about the decision to be taken and the situation at hand, the leader arrives at a conclusion where as to take a decision all by himself/herself or to involve the group and if it involves the group, to what extent.
The Vroom Jago leadership model has a pre defined set of decision styles the leader can wish to adapt.
• Leadership Styles
• Autocratic I (A1). The leader takes a decision completely at his discretion without the knowledge or consent of the team members in this style of leadership. This style of decision making is possible only in cases where there is not a lot at stake with the out come of this decision, when the employees’ decision is not exactly crucial for the outcome of the project, or when a leader thinks decision can be arrived at based on the information at hand and thinks any additional information isn’t needed from the team members to take a good and calculated decision.
• Autocratic II (A2). The leader takes a decision based on the information that is requested from the team members. This differs from the above type of leadership in the only aspect that the leader doesn’t have all the necessary information to arrive at a decision and requests the same from the team members. The leader is not obliged to disclose any details as to why he needs the information. It’s at the discretion of the leader as to disclose such details.
• Consultative I (C1). The leader takes decision based on the input provided by the team members. The situation is discussed with each team member and input to the extent the leader thinks necessary is taken from each team member. The leader is not mandated to assemble the team in this type of leadership to arrive at decisions. Cases where the decision of the team members is important and the leader not being sure about getting the support of all the team members are preferred this type of leadership-decision model.
• Consultative II (C2). This type of leadership model differs from the above model in the only sense that the team members get together as a team in assisting the leader make a decision. While there is a group meeting with the subject line of the decision to be taken as its centre point it is limited to idea gathering while the final decision making is confined within the leader’s chamber in this type of leadership model.
• Group II (G2). This is the most open type of leadership model that is categorized in the Vroom Jago leadership model. The decision in this model is taken by the group while the leader acts a facilitator. This model is adapted in cases when the leader thinks the decision pending is a really important and there is no support from the group expected where the involvement is a must along with some special cases.
The 7 questions to be asked by the leader at the time of decision making will be-
1. Is a high quality decision of utmost importance?
2. Does the leader have enough information to arrive at a good calculated decision?
3. Is the problem in the decision pending clearly defined and has recognized solutions?
4. Does the leader need to be endorsed by the team members regarding the decision?
5. Will the team members support the leader in case of a decision taken by the leader irrespective of the decision taken?
6. Do the team members have common goals?
7. Are the team members likely to not to agree on the decisions mutually?
1. Yulk and VanFleet (1992)