On my sun/oracle blog I wrote a note/précis of an issue of the McKinsey Quarterly. The keynote article, “Distortions & deceptions in strategic decisions” looks at the flawed human values often inserted into major business decisions. They quote a major acquisition decision taken by a dominant player and suggest that the major advocate of the merger wanted it for personal political gain. They look at ways in which these human factors can be brought into the open and evaluated in the decision making process. Despite identifying over-optimism as a frequent occurrence once a proposal has been made, the decision not to proceed is often taken in private and so collaborative decision making cannot neutralise these human shortcomings. One suggestion is to ask the proposer, what their next best proposal is.
The original article is longer and points at previous reviews of the issue of product aligned professional services. Most of the links will now be broken.