Good decision making comes from complete clarity and rightful confidence. For this, one must step back from current work portfolio and take a look at the bigger picture regularly. The number one barrier that is holding most people back from achieving their business’ (or even their own) full potential is their inability to make decisions.
Here are the seven commandments that would help in nurturing good decision-making ability.
1. Take it!
The first and foremost important commandment in good decision making is — to make the decision! Lack of decision or procrastination leads you to failure. On the contrary, taking a prompt decision and then navigating through it, fine-tuning it on the go can be a better option. So, therefore, the first important commandment is — take the decision rather than hanging in.
2. A consensus is not always good
Yes — you heard me correctly. There are tough times when the agreement is useless. If everyone in the organisation is on the same page, then usually there is no need for having separate consensus. However, when there are different views about making the final decision; someone has to take the lead — and this someone is always the leader.
3. Be strong and tenacious
Solutions are still simple; just that they might difficult to execute and follow-through. However, again, rewards are better too. Be strong and persuade the decision until its end to see fruitful results. Tenacity pays off!
4. Use primary and quality information
Information is a critical input for every decision-making process, and therefore, data must be of the best quality. Whenever you face any burning issue, make sure that you get all the information — first hand. If it involves number people to provide so; have them all together — present at once. Second-hand information may come with some vital omission or some fundamental yet divergent insertion. In either case, it is too dangerous to use it directly; esp. when the decision is the critical one.
5. Decide with the big picture (vision) in mind
There are very few exceptions when some decisions are made by keeping titles, emotions or egos aside. Almost all the times, keeping the vision and higher goal in mind does help. This vision not only makes decision making easy but also keeps the focus steady, which can lead to better and faster decisions. Even tactical decisions should have a strategic basis.
6. Prefer quality over quantity
There is always a laundry list of issues to be tackled. Handling them all may not be a good option. Prioritise all and take them one by one. Earlier you do the prioritisation, better it goes. If the issues are not mutually exclusive; you will often see that solving bigger one removes many smaller ones.
7. Eliminate it, change it or live with it!
I always follow this fundamental principle in my daily life — business as well as personal. Whenever faced with some problem, there are just three options. First and the most preferred option is to eliminate the problem, forever from the root. The second acceptable choice is to conquer and change the situation to your favour. Moreover, if both fail, then accept it as-is and live with it forever. Taking the as-is condition may not be sweet enough, but there would not be any option left either.
Decision making is not only a science but also an art which must be practised and improvised continuously. Above commandments is just the beginning to it.
Note: This article first appeared on Knewron‘s website.
About the Author: I am an entrepreneur, business & technology advisor, a published author, futurist, and emerging technology expert. I help companies to improve critical metrics by finding significant problems and then solving them in innovative ways. Sane and sensible adoption of technology continues to be my area of focus.