Discussion Questions
Week #12 [Decision-making and Planning]
(Return to April 5 Class Notes)

  • Chaffee wrote of her five models in the late 80’s. What of this contextual time may have influenced her thinking? Does this hold true today?
  • Do you buy Chaffee’s argument about the utility of theory?
  • Consider what Argyis might say to Chaffee about the underlying features of organizational choice.
  • How much logic is inherent in university decision-making? What else is apparent? Are values articulated? Think about what Senge would say about the underlying and fundamental assumptions.
  • Is collegiality still alive and well in academe?
  • How is decision-making impacted in times of crisis?
  • What role does leadership take in defining the decision-making process? How does this differ by frame of operation? By context?
  • What process might work best to unearth hidden assumptions?
  • How might you institute simultaneous tracking as a new leader?
  • Peterson outlines an historical progression of planning—are some of the “earlier” models still in practice? Should they be?
  • As higher ed often borrows from business, what might be the impact of this lag in application?
  • What do leaders need to be proactive for contextual planning? What is assumed about the institutional culture and decision-making process?
  • What happens to decision-making and planning if higher education does not become “flatter?”
  • What can be done to improve leadership/individual lack of awareness? What can you do?
  • How might leaders learn of the negative impressions staff have of their leadership? How can you receive constructive criticism?
  • How might you foster double-loop learning?