Greyhound Lines is the intercity bus transportation company which operating on low profits and unable to meet the customer demand (Greyhound, 2011). Based on the case study, in order to reduce operating costs and improve customer service, reduction in employees, routes and services has been done. However, this action leads to discourtesy of customers. Besides this, the introduction of Trips which is mainly to resolve problems in the highly complex software actually creates lots of problems. The problems are time consuming to response the telephone calls, congestion, system crash, long waiting period, poor customer services and lose of customer confidence. 1. Was the decision facing Greyhound executives, programmed or non-programmed? Decisions made by a manager can be classified as programmed and non-programmed (Schermerhorn, 2011). Programmed decisions refer to solutions that are planned in advance from the previous experience and execute it to solve the routine problems (Majumdar, 2010). Managers use these decisions to solve common, direct and anticipated problems (Ramarao, 2010). On the other hand, non-programmed decisions refer to specific solutions that are made for unstructured problems (Majumdar, 2010). These problems are new and unanticipated (Majumdar, 2010). A manager has to resolve the problems in a condition of uncertainties and lack of information (Ramarao, 2010). Some non-programmed decisions must be made in time of crisis which means that an unpredictable problem can lead to tragedy if not being figured out immediately and properly (Schermerhorn, 2011). Greyhound executives faced non-programmed decisions. The problems can be proved in the case study, ‘the company was operating on paper-thin margins and could not afford to dispatch nearly empty vehicles or have buses and drivers on call to meet surges in demand’ and solved by ‘put together a reorganization plan that called massive cut in personnel, routes and services, along with the computerization of everything from passenger reservations to fleet scheduling’. Apart from that, the introduction of Trips created problems. Examples given in the case study are ‘the time Greyhound operators spent responding to telephone calls dramatically increased’, ‘many callers could not even get through because of problems in the new switching mechanism’, ‘the computers were so swamped that it sometimes took 45 seconds to respond to a single keystroke and five minutes to print a ticket. The system crashed so often that agents frequently had to hand-write tickets’ and ‘customers stood in long lines’, ‘missed connections’. Non-programmed decisions should be applied in these situations. Based on the case study, the reduction of workforce lead to few problems, which are ‘discourtesy to customers increased’ and ‘the number of passengers plunged sharply, and regional rivals continued to pick off Greyhound’s dissatisfied customers’. Greyhound executives faced non-programmed decision to overcome the problems. In my opinion, Greyhound executives should improve the decision made to ensure the company development.
2. Do you think Greyhound executive should have used the classical model, administrative model, political model or judgmental heuristics approach? Which do you believe they used? Discuss. Classical model is a prescriptive model (Schermerhorn, 2011). Manager that practices classical model achieves goals that are known and agreed upon, strives for certainty by consolidating complete data, owns good criteria to evaluate alternatives, makes decisions rationally and logically based on economic condition (Joshi, 2011). On the contrary, manager that implants administrative model is an intuitive thinker (Schermerhorn, 2011). Individual makes decisions in a situation that is full of ambiguities, lack of knowledge on the options and their results (Joshi, 2011). The satisfying decision is the first alternative that comes to mind (Schermerhorn, 2011). Decision making...
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