Whether an organization ultimately succeeds or fails can be determined by management decisions made by business leaders. We read about many examples of poor management decisions that sent companies into a downward spiral. In today’s fast-paced, complex business world, leaders must continuously refine their decision-making processes and practices too, to ensure their businesses forge ahead on the right track.
So, decision-making is very critical to building a successful business. Ideally, business leaders need to make the right decisions and drive them ahead with confidence and conviction.
What you should know about decision-making per se
For all businesses, big or small, sound management decision-making is a vital process. When done properly, decision-making involves making intelligent choices, taking evidence and combining it with past experience. You can take time out, to practice decision-making steps when business opportunities allow and, learn from every decision you make. The more experience you get, the more comfortable and effective you’ll be as a decision-maker.
How to make better decisions
Every day, business heads make choices that can impact the business. To ensure they embark on the right track, decisions must thoroughly consider the issue or problem, use the most relevant information and deliver the planned impact. How can you make better decision? Here are some tips to ensure best results.
• Define the issue: Ask questions, get feedback from key players, and consider the situation from all possible angles. If you understand the scenario thoroughly, the more informed your decision will be.
• Review information: Gather as much relevant data as possible. If it’s a larger decision, you can delegate data-gathering to team members.
• Evaluate each option: Consider the pros and cons of each possible course of action – to determine which routes provide the best chance of success.
• Choose a course of action: Make a conscious choice and move forward.
• Implement your plan: Make a clear, specific, actionable plan. Communicate clearly to employees and address their questions and concerns.
• Assess the results: Every action you take is a learning opportunity. Monitor results to pinpoint which of your decision-making skills need improvement. Did you: Have the right data? Consider or recognize each option? Communicate well enough to your employees?
• Adjust for the future: Make the necessary changes to re-orient your course of action. Make a note of what didn’t work, so you can make better decisions in the future.
How to improve the decision-making process
It’s vital to build in the evaluationfactor into the process of decision-making. Ensure that at least one of the steps includes evaluation – especially for future use. Additionally, keep all stakeholders in the loop. Capture metrics along the way that show successes, failures, the comparative benefits of options you’ve considered, and research into what competitors have done – to help support your responses and keep the process moving smoothly.
How can you encourage ethical decision-making?
Ethics comes into play in all businesses. So, the question that crops up often is – has the decision been ethical?
Ethical decision-makers consider the effects of their decisions on their communities and the organization’s bottom line; and it also encourages other employees to toe the line. When effectively implemented, ethical decision-making enables your business to thrive, while at the same time, maintaining and becoming a positive force in the community.