Vroom-Jago model is a decision making tool that is used in determining the level of involvement of team members in the decision making process. It looks into the pros and cons of participatory leadership in various decision making situations in relation to the quality of the final decision. This model was developed by Author Vroom in collaboration with Author Jago to illustrate the role of leadership in decision making situations. It is used in helping managers and leaders ensure effective and efficient decision making mechanisms are employed in decision making. This model has three major building blocks: leader participation styles, diagnostic questions employed in the analysis of a decision situation, finally there are a set of decision rules.
Leader Participation Styles
There are five levels of subordinate participation in the decision making process in this model ranging from the most autocratic to the most collaborative. The most autocratic level entails the leader making the decision solely and informs the others later. He/she utilizes the facts available on the situation at hand. This method is employed mostly where the leader is highly experienced in handling such situations or where the team is experiencing time constraints and the leader is confident that the subordinates will accept his/her decision (Daft, 2007).
The second level is whereby the leader asks for specific information from subordinates then utilizes the information gathered to make a decision. He/she does not need to inform the subordinates the purpose of the information. The subordinates input is not needed in coming up with alternatives or making of the final decision. The third level is consultative in nature. The leader presents the situation at hand to the subordinates and may individually ask for their opinions, however, at no point is the team brought together for brainstorming. The decision is made solely by the leader (Daft, 2007).
The forth level involves the team much more than the previous levels. The subordinates discuss the problem as a group, give their perspectives on the situation and share ideas to the leader. The leader is responsible for making the final decision. The final level is the most democratic of all the above mentioned levels. The decision is made by the team as a whole, the role of the leader is to act as a facilitator and aid the team in coming up with a final decision that is agreed by all. This method is employed where there is adequate time for a group decision, there lacks clarity in the problem definition and in situations when team participation is important in the decision making process.
These are questions asked before deciding which decision style to use. Factors that are put into consideration when determining the participatory level required include the level of quality required for the final decision, the subordinate’s expertise or the leader’s prowess in the field and the need for subordinates to agree to the decision. The diagnosis should bring out the following aspects: the level of significance of the final decision to the organization; whether input of subordinates is require for the success of the project; adequacy of the information available to make sole decisions; clarity of the problem at hand; probability of acceptability of the decision by the subordinates if made solely; consistency of the teams’ definition of a successful solution to that of the organization; possibility of a conflict within the team on the best solution (Mind Tools, 2013).
Evaluation of diagnostic questions is done in this phase. The questions should have two responses either ‘yes’ or ‘no’ and are answered in a chronological order from the first to the last until one comes to the method whose variables are all favorable in the given situation.
Vroom – Jago model assumes that one leadership style cannot work in all situations thus the need to carry out an analysis before selecting the most suitable path to take based on the situation. The model can be used in making opportune and prudent decisions. Development of a system that generates the decision model can enhance the use of this model.