• Michelle Carlen

3 Keys To Making Great Decisions

Sound decision-making is a critical tool of any organization and its leaders and is directly related to its overall success. Whether you're an entry-level staff, mid-level manager, executive leader, or an independent business owner, knowing the skills to make the best decisions will positively impact your work environment.


To make sound decisions, let’s first look at poor decision making and how learning from bad choices can inform you to be better at decision-making in the future.


Poor decisions are based on some of the following issues:

1) Lack of valid information and full understanding of how the parts work as a whole. When you choose not to consider all available information, looking at only a portion of the data, you set yourself up for a riskier outcome and invite failure.

2) Lack of desire to take necessary action to make an informed choice. Some people make reactive or emotionally charged choices because they don’t know the steps to make a wise decision, or they avoid confronting a difficult situation and doing the necessary work to make a good choice. Decisions should NOT be made in haste. Learning to respond instead of reacting too quickly can be invaluable.


3) Lack of confidence for fear of making the wrong choice. Confidence is your platform for possibility. The lack of confidence in an individual to make a choice can put others in a tailspin creating a chaotic environment.

4) Indecision = NO DECISION. This is probably the worst offense of them all. Indecision comes from a place of fear and so the individual fails to make ANY choice at all and causes a "wavering" effect. Wavering can confuse your team’s vision and direction.

It is possible to overcome poor decision making – here are a few tips on how:


1) ALWAYS commit to looking at all data and understanding the situation at-hand. Choosing to have a wide perspective and open mind by gaining counsel or opinions from respected colleagues or confidants about what needs to be decided upon and the appropriate course of action can help reduce risk.

2) Understand what outcome is desired. If it's not clear what outcome is needed or wanted, then arriving at a choice will be even more challenging. Sometimes in the workplace you'll arrive at decisions by consensus, while other decisions will be made by one person. Knowing which type of decision is being made, how it will be made, and who will make it will help guide and reveal the path to your desired result.


3) Set a deadline for when a decision will be made. I cannot emphasize this enough. Yes, there will be times that you need to make a quick decision, I'm not referencing these. I'm talking about those times when you know you need to say cut your budget, lay-off an employee, or determine how you'll finance a business further. Establishing a deadline keeps you accountable for making the best choice and will help others that require their participation to be on-board.

Taking the time, effort, and data evaluation to methodically make a decision will help elevate your organization, your staff, and ultimately translate into success. #decisionmaking #business #bestpractices #leadership #productivity #workplace #humanresources #executive


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