Harvard Business Review: Carter Racing Case. A Management Communication Analysis.

1000 words - 4 pages

This is a really tough decision and the mind is constantly changing against to the conclusion. But after a thorough consideration, I don't think the team should race this time. John should get more data and information for the engine failure until he decides to race again for the next season. There are numerous ways to decide to race or not for John Carter when it comes to decision making. He can make the decision based on either his fellow chief mechanic Tom's view, or the engine expert Paul's assumption. However, regardless either way, the conclusion should be reached by some sort of quantitative analysis.At the first glance at the scenario, the immediate reaction was to throw all the numbers provided into the opportunity cost calculation, and compare the pros and cons between the options. However, in order to come up with the most accurate prediction on the expected value of the outcome, it is necessary to gather the all of the associated costs in dollars. John can easily calculate the cost to withdraw by adding up the fees from the data that was provided in the case. Yet, for the other options: race and win, race and fail, it is impossible for us to calculate the precise cost of "winning" and "failure" since there are no price tags for fames and sponsorship possibilities if the team wins the race, as well as the risks that might happen in relation of gasket failure such as life, and destructing in team reputation. Thus, without the inclusion of all the necessary factors, the result of calculated the expected value would be useless in measuring losses and gains.The second reason that I think John should wait for the race is due to insufficient information provided in the case. In addition to the chart that was provided by Tom (exhibit 1), there should also be a chart showing the distribution on head gasket success is related to temperature since the race might begin in a day with fairly low temperature. Thus, if I were John, I would have to determine to postpone the race until further information is gathered.Of course it is not easy to convince someone on things that no one can be guarantee of. Thoughts and doubts gone through the mind such as: the race itself is in the nature of a risky business; wondering if John should grab the opportunity right now before it flies away because next season is still unknown, etc... Even after knowing insufficient information was available, it is still really tempting to choose racing rather than withdraw. This tension fighting unconsciously in the mind reminds me of the principle of scarcity , which people tend to value potential loss (the fees for racing) more heavily than potential gains (engine invested and human life). These feeling often caused managers to have bias on decision making.Besides the method of quantitative calculation on costs, the problem John faces also consists of the selection between two different sides of...

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