Does Scheduling Matter? When Unscheduled Decision Making Result in More Effective Meetings
Journal of Strategy and Management 9(1):15-38, February 2016
Posted: 26 Dec 2018
Date Written: May 12, 2015
Managers spend a great deal of time in meetings making decisions critical to organisational success, yet the design aspects of meetings remain largely understudied. This article elaborates on the potential impact of one critical design aspect of meetings — namely, whether a decision to be taken (or the meeting in general) was scheduled or not — on the use of distributed information, information elaboration, conflict, speed of decision making, and, ultimately, decision-making effectiveness. The analysis is based on a comprehensive literature review and analysis of three exemplary decision-making meetings of managers in a public organisation. The obtained insights suggest that a scheduled meeting with a shared agenda of all decisions to be taken may induce decision makers to form opinions upfront at the meeting, with these opinions eventually serving as sources of conflict during group discussion. Because of the nature of the conflict generated, these meetings are more likely to run long and to not deliver the expected outcomes.
Keywords: Meetings, group decision-making, information elaboration, conflict, decision process, speed
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation