Top 5 Reasons Your Organization Needs Decision Clarity

Imagine a world in which you begin every day fully knowing that you are focused on the specific decisions you need to make to advance your mission. No confusion. No conflict.

You already know what decisions you and your team members are empowered to make. As a result, you enjoy the fruits of streamlined decision-making: confusion is eliminated, conflict is reduced, focus and communication are increased and you are using the full decision-making and intellectual abilities of your entire team. You have something that most organizations would dream of having, clear focus and an empowered work force.more

Decision Clarity makes that “imagine” world real. It’s a new way of thinking, a process and a set of teachings designed to clarify power and decision-making in non-profits. It is not a practice that has been imported from the for-profit world and retrofitted for non-profits. Rather, it is a method specifically crafted to harness the energy and passion of non-profits.

So how do you know if Decision Clarity is a process your organization needs?

Here are 5 basic reasons Decision Clarity should be sought by your organization:

1) As an Executive Director you have no idea of the total number of decisions that you and your team have to make. There is so much on your organizational plate, in the dictionary under “triage mode”, there’s a group photo of your team. Every day is a tsunami of activity but while you’re all very busy, you’re not making as much progress as you would like. This can be a recipe for disaster. An inventory and prioritization of important and urgent decisions are necessary for movement toward the mission. If you don’t know all of the decisions you have to make how can you get where you want to go?

Decision Clarity allows you and your teammates to create a comprehensive list of all of the major decisions in your organization, so you and your team mates can calmly and effectively advocate to distribute these decisions to the people who are best positioned to make them.

2) Mission objectives are at a standstill and process and decision bottlenecks abound, people who should be making decisions aren’t making them or not doing so in a timely fashion. You have great difficulty moving your team forward.

Decisions are the drivers of all organizational progress. Organizations that have great difficulty in making decisions (or can’t make them at all) don’t thrive. Organizations with ineffective decision-makers who create process bottlenecks waste time and money, as they creep along their decision paths. Decision Clarity can help your organization build crisp decision-makers who distribute decisions to the qualified and relevant parties, have a greater chance of moving quickly, recovering efficiently, and achieving your mission.

3) Your organization suffers from an over-reliance on collaboration. Your non-profit accepts as a touchstone that all colleagues must be listened to, at all the times, without regard to whether or not they have a stake in the decision before you. Listening to your entire team is a good thing but this can bog down your team if you assume that the decision will organically appear when all the opinions are in.

Decision Clarity is a process that begins with the end in mind. By letting people advocate for the role of Decision Maker, as well as the other roles in our DACI2 model you avoid endless rounds of collaboration where no one is really certain who is going to make the ultimate decision. Decision Clarity is ultimately focused on responsibility while still inviting teamwork.

4) You’re exhausted. You feel like all of the pressure for your organization’s success is on you. You wish you could get more people to step up and be leaders and you don’t have a safe and responsible way to apportion decision-making in your organization. You don’t know how to do it in a comprehensive manner so you don’t take the first step.

The Decision Clarity process establishes one decision-maker for every major decision in your organization. You’re part of the process. Nothing gets out of control. The people who advocate for and are awarded decision-making responsibility still must consult with and take into consideration the other people who are affected by this decision. The decision-maker is supported by a unified decision-making team, which includes a Decision-Maker, an Advisor, a Contributor(s) and those who are to stay informed. And if the decision-maker starts to go off the rails, the Executive Director always has the ability to step in and correct the situation.

5) You and your team just concluded an amazing, harrowing, laborious, necessary or (fill in your own verb here) strategic planning process. This is a great step forward but while you now know what you’re going to do our guess is that you’re not as clear as you can be as to how you’re going to utilize your people to get all of this done or who is empowered to make the crucial decisions on your strategic vision and implementation plans. In short you’re not that clear about how to make all this work happen.

Decision Clarity assigns specific decisions to specific people, so each person knows how to make the strategic plan operational.

On a scale of 1–10, with 1 being completely bottlenecked and 10 being completely clear, how would you rate your organization’s decision-making practices? To answer that consider the following:

1) Are you clear about who is going to make the important decisions before you and when they’re going to do so?

2) Do you have faith that the right people will be consulted before these important decisions get made?

We’d love to hear from you. Let us know what you think.