Intuition in strategic decision making: Friend or foe in the fast-paced 21(st) century? Academic Article uri icon


  • Many executives and managers embrace intuition as an effective approach to important decisions. Indeed, recent surveys and business press articles indicate broad support for the use of intuition when making strategic decisions. The need for quick decisions, the need to cope with demands created by complex market forces, and the assumed benefits of applying deeply held knowledge combine to create strong perceived value for the intuitive approach. Intuition, however, has not been subjected to sufficient review, particularly in a forum for executives and other managers. This article responds to the need for critical evaluation. Utilizing holistic hunch and automated expertise as two fundamental definitions, our review evaluates intuition's costs and benefits in light of an organization's goals. Drawing evidence from the fields of behavioral decision making, strategic decision making, and mental modeling, our conclusions suggest intuition is a troublesome decision tool. To contribute to effective managerial practice, we offer tactics that decision makers can use to make intuitive judgments and choices less troublesome.

published proceedings


altmetric score

  • 81.58

author list (cited authors)

  • Miller, C. C., & Ireland, R. D.

citation count

  • 161

complete list of authors

  • Miller, CC||Ireland, RD

publication date

  • February 2005