>>This chapter provided both theoretical and practical information about small group problem solving. The chapter is designed to get us to think about what should happen for a group to solve problems effectively, and what they can do to help ensure that what should happen does happen. The focus of this chapter is to recognize that individual actions and group norms contribute to effective and ineffective decisions. Ultimately, systematic procedures that reinforce good individual behaviors and positive group norms will produce better decisions.
>>With that said, think about what we learned throughout this chapter and apply it to the following case study. With this case study, please justify your choices and think about the difficulties you might encounter if you were to make this discussion with a group of advisors. Provide rationale for your choice as well as breaking down the potential benefits as well as problems of solving this on your own versus solving it in a group.
“The Mayor’s Public Relations Dilemma”
The mayor of a large Midwestern city appoints all members of city commissions, which must then be approved by the city council. A few months after being appointed, one appointee was charged and subsequently convicted of having taken a bribe to vote for giving a very lucrative contract to a particular bidder. Now the mayor is running for reelection. The mayor’s opponent has used the case of the bribe‑taking commissioner to accuse the mayor of having run a corrupt administration. What action seems most appropriate to winning reelection?
Place the blame on the city council for approving the appointment.
Ignore the charge, but do point out that the mayor has appointed many commissioners who have been accused of no wrongdoing.
Publicly declare that the mayor thought the appointee was honorable.
Do nothing; to respond will only give more credence to a rather unsubstantiated charge.
Point out that the mayor started the investigation that led to conviction of the corrupt commissioner.