Hundreds of decisions are made on projects. You are asked to bring some action every day and that certainly means deciding something. You will learn the ways to bring about a better decision by understanding the simple process in this article.
The decision you are supposed to take might be something little like whether to call the meeting or not. Or something certain like whether or not to escalate a problem to the sponsor.
Making a decision is an essential skill. Before going deep into that you must understand the meaning of decision-making.
Meaning of Decision making:
It is the capacity to choose an option from the range of alternatives. Also, choose the best subsequent step to solve the issue you are in at that moment.
It might look very simple to analyze but most people find it quite difficult at work.
Why is making a decision difficult?
It’s tough to bring in decisions because:
- You may not be having all the required data
- You may feel that you don’t have the liberty to make any decision
- You may be worried about proposing the wrong option.
You need not have to worry about the last option. There isn’t such a thing as the wrong decision.
You can make decision-making simpler by including the process for it. This process enables you to step through various choices to give yourself certainty that all the angles are covered by you and you are prepared to take the decision.
The process of decision making
This process is the key tool for making any decision. It’s not the tool where you plug in the data and get the decision as output. Humans can bring in the right call themselves, hence the use of tools isn’t required to do this task.
There are many techniques for decision-making, however, an easy process looks as below:
Project decision log: How to use it?
- Identify that you want to bring in a decision – this looks like a dumb step to keep but noticing that a decision has to be brought is certainly the first stage in taking action.
- Collect the data. What input is needed to enable you to carry out the next step? Talk to people or get the stats who can assist and inform you.
- Analyze the choices. Several options are inclined to be there including “do nothing”. It is often a choice and is a conscious option.
- Select an option. This will be the decision. Just do it by making the call.
- Follow through. Put up with the fundamental steps required to turn a decision into action.
Now for instance, If you want to delay the project by a week or so, then update all your team members with that news and review the schedule of your project.
This is the fundamental decision-making model. However, you can take another step that is useful too. Review your decision after a while and think about whether you are satisfied with the call made by you.
Being thoughtful about your decisions helps you to put together better alternatives next time.
Below are five thorough suggestions for making better decisions.
Decision-making can be improved. The more you commend it, the more you will get confident. But also you can grasp how you attain decision-making to offer a better chance to yourself of a useful outcome.
Below are some tips
- Give enough time to yourself
Don’t decide under pressure because you can easily get caught up in getting it incorrect.
Even if you are thriving under stress, a quiet time of a few minutes to analyze the data you have and the options will help you to make a perfect choice. Sleep on the decision if you can and see whether you will still think the same way when you wake up.
There might be situations where you have to make a quick decision and you will not get a chance to think about it again. Most people are upright to the idea of evaluating realities before making a formal statement. So, ask for extra time if you need it.
In business, decision-making is vital as the decisions made will direct to financial significance for the company. So, will you decide to suggest a risk mitigation technique? That will cost the business an entity, whether it’s resources or time.
As the intentions for the business can be crucial, the decisions taken must be right. This can be assisted by collecting all the facts.
When you aren’t having the data, you are guessing about the right outcome, and honestly, you are depending on luck.
“I was lucky” is something you don’t want to mention on your resume.
Go through the data, talk to the people, dig deeper, and make your judgment. It’s easy to make the right decision when the facts are known.
- Be aware of the consequences
Understand the real consequences of the decision you make. It will give you an idea of what has to happen next – Is that what you want really?
For instance, Will the decision made by you lead to further conclusions on how to pay for the selected course of action?
You might have to consider other people’s opinions here as it’s always easier to get the wisdom of crews to speculate through the next logical steps.
Utilize the expert’s opinions in your team. You might be the one who makes the decisions but it doesn’t hurt when you get a second opinion. A person who is a little more distant from the situation than you might bring a standpoint that you may not have.
If you are not willing to be seen fetching input from the members of your team, then discuss it with your trusted manager or your mentor.
The process of your decision-making might not work every time. Hence, be prepared to tilt your strategy to suit the circumstance.
Every decision you want to bring in might not need the same thinking process. So, you have to adopt an approach that is flexible and enables you to modify your ideas according to the situation. When you are toiling in project management, you will be in a world that needs you to be adaptable. Hence, you should be ready to be flexible. You have to address each opinion in the way that suits it best.
Being flexible means you have the experience and skills to understand the situation and decide on the proper way onward even though it’s an entirely different approach from how you have worked out stuff in the past.
The skills you must possess for making a decision
- Leadership: This is required because you want other members to trust your decision and abide by it.
- Communication: hence you can make them understand the process of decision making and your final decision to the team members.
- Skill to process the data: you might have to shift through the facts (evidence and numbers from people) and comprehend that data to bring in your decision.
- Decisiveness: Once you make a decision you have to stick to that. (unless it is uncovered quickly which is a foolish thing to do. You should have the humility to acknowledge the error and move on in such a case)
- Self-awareness: This is required because you have to recognize the personal biases in making decisions and work around reversion to imply and the delusion of control.
- Management of risk: Any choice made by you will have risk linked with it. Hence, you should be able to consider and assess those risks while making your decision.
- Ethics: Ethics in decision-making is important. You need to evaluate what’s good for the business, the people, the project, and more commonly, what’s the honorable thing to be done.
Decision-making is a significant skill for project managers and business leaders. This article helps you in making incredible choices at work.