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Decision-Making Techniques


Decision-making remains a daily process that every person frequently performs, making it an exciting topic among researchers. Decision-making is performed using various decision-making theories and styles. Some decision-making theories and styles include intuitive, descriptive, analytical, heuristic, normative, rational, emotional, and creative decision-making. The author will utilize heuristic, rational, intuitive, and creative decision-making styles to decide on a personal situation (University of Minnesota, 2015).

From December 2019 to January 2020, I was in the process of applying for placement which was a requirement for my degree. I applied to two critical companies, including British Petroleum and British Airways. However, I had to consider the distance from my home to the workplace and extra time to study an online course during the placement. I had to decline one offer, which did not allow me adequate study time and was far from my home. Fortunately, after the interviews with the two companies, British Petroleum Limited offered me a placement on 3rd February 2020, and I had two weeks to decline the offer. British Airways also sent a placement letter on 20th February 2020.

I had various alternatives, including accepting the British Petroleum Ltd placement, declining the placement offer at BP before the three weeks, meaning I could lose the job placement, or waiting for an offer from British Airways. However, if I failed to receive an offer from British Airways, I would lose the placement opportunities and continue making more offers. The outcome of the decision includes refusing the BP offer as it did not meet the conditions. Fortunately, on 20th February, British Airways offered me a placement letter, and I started working on 22nd February. I had time for an online course in the evening near home.

Rational decision making

The dimensions of decision-making have been researched extensively and refer to decision-making procedures involving gathering information necessary for the decision and depending on the analysis of the information to make a choice. Indicators of rational decision-making include using the decision-makers knowledge, cognition, and well-informedness and gathering and analyzing the information (Malewska, 2019). A decision maker assesses the possible outcomes of various decision alternatives to minimize uncertainty and select the decisions that remain favorable in consideration of the risk-benefit analysis (Kaufmann et al., 2016)

The steps involved in rational decision-making include the following.

First, identify the problem clearly because failure can affect the entire decision-making process. Second, create decision criteria by identifying the decision’s relevance and may include other stakeholders, preferences, values, and interests in the procedure. Third, weighing the decision criteria through the developed criteria to develop the proper priority in their decision. Fourth, generate alternatives or options by listing the potential alternatives to making a decision. Fifth, assessing alternatives. After developing a list of potential options, the decision maker should evaluate every option and finally choose the most appropriate option. The decision maker should choose by evaluating the options (Lumen, n.d).

For instance, the problem in the scenario is getting a placement. The second step is identifying the critical factors, including placement in a company near home, which would provide enough time to study an online course. After getting a placement letter from BP, I declined the offer because I needed more study time, and the firm was far from home. I waited for a letter from British Airways. The alternatives include accepting the British Petroleum Ltd placement, declining the placement offer at BP before the three weeks meaning I could lose the job placement, or waiting for an offer from British Airways. However, if I failed to receive an offer from British Airways, I would lose the placement opportunities and continue making more offers. The outcome of the decision includes refusing the BP offer as it did not meet the conditions. However, I was lucky enough to get a letter from British Airways and started the job, which gave me adequate time to study my online course and was near my home.

Intuitive decision making

Intuitive decision-making entails choices for alternatives influenced by affectively charged judgments arising via a non-conscious, rapid, and holistic connection. It differs from the rational decision-making process that allows conscious and active processes because intuitive decision-making processes happen on subconscious and non-conscious levels. Some indicators of intuitive decision-making include gut feelings, hunches, notions, and excitements. The intuitive decision-making process involves decision-makers expressing their positive and gut feelings and negative or neutral emotions concerning a specific decision alternative (Kolbe et al., 2019). Malewska (2019) claims that intuitive decisions depend on the hunch that relies on the capacity to determine patterns, memories, stimuli susceptibility, past experiences, and long-term individual preferences. Intuition translates to immediate perception or awareness of a fact between two outcomes of a phenomenon. More so, intuition assists in comprehending processes that happen externally from the conscious mind of the decision-maker (Fellnhofer & Sornette, 2022). Sometimes, the decision-maker can scan the environment for signs and cues to acknowledge patterns. Decision-makers should consider using analytical or rational decision-making during intuition decision-making to obtain the best outcomes (University of Minnesota, 2015).

For instance, I had always desired to work for British Airways, and when I was required to search for a placement, British Airways was my first choice. However, I had to apply to other companies, including BP, to increase my chances of placement. My uncle worked for British Airways, and I knew that the company offered enough free time to their employees to do their personal tasks and was near my home. Moreover, my uncle informed me that they had job placement opportunities in the business development department, which the company provided during the period every year. When the BP letter came first, I declined it because I was optimistic that British Airways could send their placement letter, too, which they did. It favored my preferences and conditions, and I started working there.

Heuristic decision making

Heuristic originates from the Greek, which means to find. Heuristic is utilized in cognitive psychology as an essential shortcut, rule of thumb, or approximation for searching via a space of possible options (del Campo et al., 2016). Lumen (n.d) Heuristics include decision-making and analytical tools that assist in simplifying the analysis procedure by depending on tested and tried rule thumb. Heurits simplify complicated situations and permit decision-makers to concentrate on essential information. Some of the heuristics utilized in decision-making include take-the-best and recognition heuristics. The recognition heuristic includes an inference strategy that depends on a single piece of information or the recognition cue while assuming other information (del Campo et al., 2016). Take-the-best heuristics defines potentially various characteristics of options and gets considered a model of boundedly rational decision-making (del Campo et al., 2016).

For instance, I had been informed that British Airways recruits and provides job placement to learners every year in January and February. My uncle further confirmed that, indeed, the company had the opportunity. British Airways is near my home and provide enough time for its employees to perform other tasks. More so, it was recruiting people during that period. Therefore, I had to decline the BP placement offer, which came first, and wait for the British Airways offer, which I was optimistic I would get.


In conclusion, decision-making remains a section of an individual’s life because one has to make decisions frequently. However, decision-making is made using various decision-making styles and theories, and the decision-maker has to consider various factors before reaching a decision. From the above scenario, the author has utilized various decision-making styles to decide on job placement, including heuristic, intuitive, and rational decision-making. In rational decision-making, the decision maker has to adhere to different steps, including determining the problem, developing the decision criteria, weighing the decision criteria, identifying the options, determining the best option, and selecting the option. The process has assisted in identifying the most appropriate decision of waiting for the British Airways placement and declining the BP offer because it did not meet the factors. However, the decision maker risked returning to making more job placement offers in case British Airways failed to provide the placement.

Intuitive decision-making focused on my preferences and past experiences with British Airways. The decision maker preferred to work at British Airways because it met the factors needed. More so, the uncle worked for the company, and the decision-maker had some experience with its operations. Heuristic decision-making offered the most simplified type of decision-making. The decision maker relied on the rule of thumb that British Airways offered placement opportunities to students from January to February and had opportunities in the target business development department. It further met the factors considered.


del Campo, C., Pauser, S., & Steiner, E. (2016). Decision-making styles and the use of heuristics in decision-making. J Bus Econ 86, 389–412 (2016).

Fellnhofer, K., & Sornette, D. (2022). Embracing the Intuitive-Analytical Paradox? How Intuitive and Analytical Decision-making Drive Paradoxes in Simple and Complex Environments. Working Paper.

Kaufmann, L., Wagner, C., & Carter, C. (2016). Individual Modes of Rational and Intuitive Decision-making by Purchasing Manager. Journal of Purchasing & Supply Management, 2016.

Kolbe, L., Bossink, B., & de Man, A. (2019). Contingent Use of Rational, Intuitive and Political Decision-making in R&D. Journal of Management Decision, 58(6).

Lumen. (n.d ). Principles of Management.

Malewska, K. (2019). Rationality vs. Intuition in the Process of Managerial Decision Making. In book: The Functioning of the Company During the Crisis (pp. 33-35). The Poznan University of Economics.

The University of Minnesota. (2015). 11.3 Understanding Decision-Making. Pressbooks.


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