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Free Essays On Decision Making

There are times in everyone’s lives where decisions have to be made. Some decisions are small, some large and some life changing. Whatever type of decision you are faced with there is a process that is taken to determine the best possible outcome. In a personal aspect when I have a decision that needs to be made I tend to weigh all the possible outcomes and determine which one benefits me the most. For instance when I decided to go back to school at the University of phoenix I weighed the [possible outcomes of going back to school with the possible outcomes of not going back to school. Determining pros and cons is a typical weigh to reach an outcome when debating what to do in a scenario. I decided that the pros far outweighed the cons and I could potentially make a lot more money by going back to school in the long run than if I had decided not to re-enroll back into college. It is good for people to be able to see both sides of an outcome when making a very important decision in life. For the major decisions and choices people have to make it is essential they they be aware of the positive and the negatives of the potential outcome they choose. I have found that when a decision is to be made on very important issues I like to be able to play the “what if” game, the “what if” game is basically putting yourself into the different scenarios of the possible outcomes. For example, when I was debating on whether or not to return to school I put myself in the scenario of what if I don’t go back to school. That scenario would have played out with me being stuck in the same old dead end job and not making the effort to change my future for the better. When I put myself in the scenario where I went back to school I could see myself graduating, getting a good job and living a more prosperous life. In concluding the decision making process is one that helps people make real life decisions in real life situations. Some people use different methods to help them figure out which decision is best for them. The majority of the time it pays to weigh your options and look ahead to what the potential of each decision could be.

The 5 stages of consumer decision-making process:
1. Recognize/Identify the Problem (Problem Awareness) This is when a person becomes aware of the current situation that they are in is different, or off as to what it should be. If there is a big enough difference or gap between their current and ideal situation, than eventually it will become apparent to that person and they will make a change. If it is not a big enough difference, and they do not notice it to where it bothers them, then that person will not make a change. An example of this would be that a girl, named Katie, realizes that she needs a new jacket for when she goes to Utah to ski in the winter with her family.
2. Collect Information or Data about Alternative Solutions This stage is where a person, after recognizing the problem, begins to collect information regarding ways to eradicate the problem. This would then lead to reducing their feelings of discomfort. Katie begins searching online for different types of jackets and jacket brands, asking some of her friends what type and brand they prefer when they go skiing, and she is also going to different stores to look at them in person.
3. Review/Evaluate the Alternatives Once the information is gathered, the next step is to review what you have found and make a pro and con list for each choice. This will result in making a more effective and knowledgeable decision. Katie found a few jacket options and now she needs to evaluate each jacket. She has a decided on the maximum price she will pay for the jacket, as well as certain criteria that she wants in the jacket that she chooses. Katie starts to determine how important each criterion is for her decision and then ranks her jacket options based on the level of criteria importance. This will help her narrow her decision by examining each jacket based on the criteria she is wanting.
4. Choose the Best Alternative This step is where the person evaluates the pros and cons of each choice that makes them different from one another. Based on Katie’s evaluative criteria, she is able to find the jacket that best fits what she was looking for.
5. Evaluate the Decision or Purchase The last step is where the person, who has purchased a product or service, evaluates if what they have decided on has met their expectations or if it has not. After Katie has purchased her new jacket and is on her way to ski, she decides if her decision for the one she chose has met, not met, or exceeded her expectations. This will also lead to whether or not Katie will consider buying that brand of jacket again.

2. The first decision-making perspective is the rational perspective. This is where a person, making a purchase, is more logical in their decision. A person would vigilantly weigh the pros and cons of what they are deciding on. This type of thinking is using left side of the brain. An example of this would be a winter coat. One would find options and develop criteria that they are looking for; such as price, material, weight of the jacket, and then would weigh the pros and cons of each alternative. This would help narrow down the decision to the most sensible option. The behavioral perspective is, in conditions of low involvement, where the consumer’s decision is a response to an environmental influence. An example of this would be point of purchase displays. A customer may be waiting in line to check out at a clothing store and sees a display of colorful summer bracelets next to her. The bracelets draw the customer’s attention and lead to her grabbing one to purchase before checking out. The experiential perspective considers, not just a certain point of the situation, but rather the entire experience. This perspective assumes that the feelings that are associated with consumption influence decision making. An example of this would be Katie’s boyfriend just recently broke up with her and she is really sad about it. Katie decides to go shopping and buy a new dress and pair of shoes to make herself feel better.

3. Routine or habitual decision-making is characterized more as a situation where not a lot of thought is necessary in order to make the decision. This type of decision-making includes products that a person purchases frequently and is inexpensive. An example of this would be purchasing socks. There is very little thinking goes into buying a pack of socks.
Limited decision-making is where a person purchases this type of product periodically and usually has a moderate cost. Although it does have some thought to the decision, it typically includes a general guide or set of principles that people have copied or learned from others. An example of this would be purchasing a pair of jeans. Jeans require some thought when finding the pair that fits the best. Consumers sometimes will take what they already know about jean brands or have learned from others who have had good or bad experiences with a brand of jeans and use that towards their decision.
Extensive decision-making is when a person takes a longer amount of time to review the pros and cons, and the perceived risks and benefits of making a decision. This is also known as decision with high involvement that you do not purchase very often and that is more expensive. An example of this would be when purchasing an engagement ring. When someone is looking for engagement rings, they create a set of criteria that they are looking for and involve extensive research in gathering information and finding different options to narrow down.

4. Noncompensatory rules are ones that don’t let consumers balance evaluations of a brand that are positive on a single characteristic alongside an evaluation that is negative on another characteristic. Conjunctive decision rule is a type of noncompensatory rule where the consumer creates a level that is acceptable at a minimum and is recognized as an endpoint for each attribute. If a brand does not make the cutoff point for any characteristic then it is eliminated from the consumer’s decision. An example of this would be a consumer making a decision about a new dress for a fancy occasion. They want a dress that is not short, not showing cleavage and fit their form appropriately. If they found a dress they loved, that fits great and is long enough, but it unfortunately showing too much cleavage than what they are wanting, than they can eliminate it from their final decision.
Part 2

Fast fashion is getting the latest fashions to consumers as fast as possible. Fast fashion is more affordable and includes retailers such as Forever 21, H&M, and Zara. There are elements that must be in place in order to successfully implement a fast fashion strategy. Vertical integration is where a company has control over multiple or all the distribution and/or production stages within the supply chain. A retailer, when deciding on new designs and manufacturing, needs to base their decisions off of consumer demand. Because fast fashion is in and out so quickly, a limited number of a variety of merchandise styles should be offered to consumers. Hence the name ‘fast’ fashion, retailers should be able to manufacture their merchandise in a number of weeks rather than months.
Consumers tend to like fast fashion because they can get what is ‘trendy’ and ‘in’ almost instantly and it comes at an inexpensive and affordable price. The negative outcomes of fast fashion for consumers would be the quality of the clothing. Since the merchandise is being produced at such a rapid pace, the quality is not going to be very high, therefore, some of the merchandise will have a short life span in ones closet. Fast fashion has negative consequences to society that some consumers may not be aware of when purchasing this type of merchandise. Due to fast fashion being produced at a rapid pace, human rights, such as working conditions and child labor, are abused. Since this type of apparel has to be produced in weeks, forced overtime, long hours, and adding child labor have been a concern and an issue for the fashion industry. It becomes more of problem when the working conditions are very poor as well, such as in sweatshops, which could threaten workers safety. Fast fashion requires a high volume of merchandise to be produced, which also leads to the need for more resources, such as water, energy and raw materials. The greater need for these resources affects climate change and is harmful to the environment. The release of chemicals during dying is toxic to the environment. Also, the development of raw materials into garments plays a role in the waste footprint and majority of the carbon impact.
There are ways for the benefits and negative outcomes of fast fashion for consumers and society to be reconciled. Consumers like that fast fashion is affordable and almost immediate, however, the quality is cheap and leads to only a few wears before throwing it out. Recycling the garments, instead of throwing the clothing away, can help by reducing garment waste. The clothes can be reused to create different fabrics and is also an eco friendly option to the environment. It would be beneficial for fast fashion companies to promote recycling of used clothing that they could take from consumers to either reuse or donate. Fast fashion companies also need to take into consideration the environmental factors of producing their merchandise. Finding effective ways to decrease the amount of water, raw materials and energy used to produce the apparel would be beneficial. Fast fashion companies need to work on improving working conditions and practicing fair labor. Companies, such as Gap and H&M, work on following standard and codes of conduct to ensure better working conditions. These improvements of fast fashion could help exercise their fullest potential in a positive way with consumers and society.

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