Business Decision Making: Studying the Competence of Leaders

Diego Pugliese, Henrique Senna


The problem studied relates to understanding the competence of leaders to take decisions and some of the psychological limitations involved in this process. The main objective of this study was to evaluate the decision-making competence of a sample of Brazilian people with positions of authority working on different sectors, providing a greater understanding of the role of leadership in business. We utilized components of the Adult Decision Making Competence (A-DMC) method. Results were based on a filtered sample of 49 leaders. The collected data allowed an analysis of the competence of individual decision-making, the group and a comparison with other literature studies. Moreover, evaluated executives outperformed senior leaders in the components of Resistance to Framing and Under / Overconfidence while they did not have such an expressive result for Consistency in Risk Perception and Resistance to Sunk Costs. It was also found that none of the executives achieved a flawless result in the questionnaire, thus evidentiating that all participants have room for improvement in decision making. Even though it is not the objective of this study to generalize these results to the Brazilian population, the outcomes are in line with those reported in the literature, and complement previous broader studies performed in the United States, Slovakia, Sweden and Italy by analyzing business leaders in the private sector, a target sample that had not yet been explored. It also provides insights for practical applications in the development of leadership competences.


Business Leadership. Competence. Decision Making. Quality of Individuals’ Decisions.

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