A decision is the selection among a number of possible actions. In a company, decision making is a continuous process of selecting an action integrated with uncertain circumstances, and an inevitable process for any business result. As decision making is involved in every aspect of business, the recognition of its importance has grown. All business decisions have an impact on corporate success. However, precedent studies have found that most decisions made particularly on a strategic level by senior management determine the future of the company.
Decisions can be made based on different emphases, beliefs, purposes, or executives’ specialized capabilities, which make differences in the company. Brousseau et al. (2006) classified decision making into four styles: decisive, hierarchic, flexible, and integrative. The authors argue that successful decision making from the executive level is mostly integrative.
The importance of design in business has grown. Although design is a significant factor in many corporations as found by research in various disciplines, few studies deal with the significance of strategic decision making and the impact of design-oriented decision making. This study, therefore, has classified strategic decision making into four distinguishable types: engineering-driven, marketing-driven, finance-driven, and design-driven.
There are numerous decisions made related to design in the new product development process. However, through interviews with active personnel in the design industry, design related decisions made in the early stage of new product development were considered strategic level design decisions, which had an impact on the company. Thus, it is reasonable to argue that decisions related to design also have levels, and those decisions have a direct impact on the company. Furthermore, precedent studies have indicated that senior management’s understanding of the term “design” was exceedingly relevant to the importance of design in...