Management Notes

Reference Notes for Management

Goal displacement, satisficing, and groupthink are

Goal displacement, satisficing, and groupthink are

A. advantages of group decision making
B. disadvantages of individual decision making
C. disadvantages of group decision making
D. problems with synergy
E. a normal aspect of all groups

The Correct Answer for the given question is Option C. disadvantages of group decision-making

Answer Explanation:

Goal displacement, satisficing, and groupthink are phenomena associated with group decision-making processes. Let’s delve into each of these terms and why they are considered disadvantages of group decision making. We will also explore why the other options are not correct.

Goal Displacement:

Goal displacement refers to a situation where the original objectives or goals of a group become distorted or replaced by other, often less important, objectives during the decision-making process. This phenomenon occurs as a result of various factors, such as individual agendas, conflicting interests, or group dynamics.

In the context of group decision making, goal displacement can be a significant disadvantage. When group members lose sight of the initial goals or priorities, it can lead to inefficient and ineffective decision making. Instead of making decisions that align with the group’s purpose or objectives, the group may veer off course and pursue alternative goals that do not serve the best interests of the organization or the group itself.

For example, in a corporate setting, a team tasked with developing a new product may initially focus on creating a high-quality and cost-effective product. However, if individual members start pursuing their personal goals, such as gaining recognition or minimizing their workload, the group’s decision-making process may shift away from the original product development goals. This can result in suboptimal outcomes and hinder the organization’s success.


Satisficing is a decision-making strategy where individuals or groups settle for a solution that meets minimum criteria rather than striving for the best or optimal solution. This approach is often employed when there are time constraints, limited information, or when the effort required to find the best solution is deemed too high.

In the context of group decision making, satisficing can be a disadvantage because it may lead to suboptimal outcomes. When group members settle for solutions that are merely satisfactory, they miss the opportunity to explore better alternatives that could have a more positive impact. This compromises the quality of the decisions made by the group.

For instance, imagine a project team tasked with selecting a vendor for a critical component of a product. Due to time constraints, the group may decide to choose the first vendor that meets the basic requirements, even though there might be better options available if they had invested more time and effort in research. This hasty decision can lead to issues down the road, such as product defects or cost overruns.


Groupthink is a psychological phenomenon that occurs when a group values harmony and consensus over critical evaluation and independent thinking. In a groupthink scenario, members of a group may suppress dissenting opinions or avoid challenging the dominant viewpoint, which can result in flawed decision making.

Groupthink is a significant disadvantage of group decision making because it can lead to poor-quality decisions and missed opportunities for innovation. When individuals within a group are afraid to voice their concerns or alternative viewpoints are silenced, the group becomes susceptible to making decisions based on incomplete information or flawed assumptions.

For example, consider a board of directors discussing a major strategic decision for a company. If the board members are more concerned with maintaining a harmonious atmosphere and avoiding conflict, they may refrain from questioning a risky strategy proposed by the CEO, even if some members have reservations. This lack of critical evaluation can lead to costly mistakes and hinder the company’s performance.

Why the Other Options Are Not Correct:

A. Advantages of group decision making:

None of these terms – goal displacement, satisficing, and groupthink – are advantages of group decision making. They are, in fact, disadvantages or challenges that can arise in the group decision-making process.

B. Disadvantages of individual decision making:

While individual decision making has its own set of disadvantages, such as limited perspectives and potential biases, the terms goal displacement, satisficing, and groupthink specifically relate to issues that commonly arise in group decision making. These terms do not directly apply to individual decision making.

D. Problems with synergy:

Synergy refers to the concept that a group can achieve better results together than the sum of what each individual could achieve separately. It is considered an advantage of group decision making when it leads to enhanced performance. While conflicts and coordination issues within a group can sometimes hinder synergy, the terms goal displacement, satisficing, and groupthink do not directly relate to problems with synergy.

E. A normal aspect of all groups:

While some level of disagreement and differences of opinion can be expected in any group, the terms goal displacement, satisficing, and groupthink represent specific dysfunctional behaviors or outcomes in the group decision-making process. They are not necessarily “normal” aspects of all groups but rather challenges that groups may face if they do not effectively manage their decision-making processes.

In conclusion,

Goal displacement, satisficing, and groupthink are indeed disadvantages of group decision making. These phenomena can lead to distorted goals, suboptimal solutions, and flawed decision making within a group. Understanding and mitigating these challenges is essential for improving the quality of group decisions and achieving better outcomes.

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