Decision Making in Business

The decision making process helps managers select the best ways to make thoughtful and informed decisions.  There are many ways to weigh options and choose the best for a given circumstance.  There are some steps that can help improve the process of decision making.

Identify – Consider the decision that needs to be made and determine how you are going to work on addressing the problem.  You must truly identify what it is you are trying to answer and improve in the workplace. 

Research – This is one of the most important steps in working on a decision.  Spending the time to research and investigate the problem is key to making a great decision.  Seeking out people that will understand the question at hand is paramount in working through the decision making process.  Determining who will be impacted by the decision is also an important point to consider.  Ask for input and meet with colleagues to see what their thoughts are on the question you are trying to answer.

Alternatives – This is the point in your decision making where you find out all the options there are to your problem that will actually work.  Think about these alternatives and trace the path to see where it will take you in the end.  Weigh the evidence between all of the options and perform due diligence to see what path seems the most successful for your business.   You also have to determine how doable the process will be for your organization. 

Make a Move – Make the decision you see as the best decision.  Move forward with the decision you have made and put all your work into the process.  Going through with the decision and making it work for your business is key.  There may be some hiccups in the process, but you have to put your all into the beginning process and make tweaks as you see necessary.  Gather input from your associates and determine how to work with and improve the process as it begins.

Review – Regardless of the decision that has to be made and how well it is executed, there can always be some room for improvement.  Any decision is made with the best of intentions, but some decisions get put into place and may need to be re-analyzed after implementation.  Taking some time to review the outcome of the decision is imperative to the success of the final outcome.  Reviewing data and input from the staff is a wonderful way to judge the success of the decision.

Troubleshooting – All decisions come with some consequences or issues along the way.  Make sure to work with the proper amount of information.  Many people try to research way too much information and others make decisions based on minimal information.  It is also necessary to not have overconfidence in the outcome you have selected.  Just because you have spent time and resources on selecting an outcome doesn’t mean you can’t change the decision or reformulate part of the decision after it has been implemented.  Sometimes the best intentions don’t actually work out in the end, but don’t be too proud to admit the decision may need some work in the end.

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