The Principles of Decision-Making

When you have to make important or complex decisions at work involving a major project or program, it is best to put emotion aside – as hard as that may be sometimes.  Instead, using logic and keeping an open mind will help you make the most effective decisions.

By using logic, you will understand not only the cause and effect of the decision, but  you will also be able to address the root of the problem. By keeping an open mind, you will be able to formulate multiple options or courses of action from which to choose

This logical, open-minded approach is an easy, 6 step process:

  1. Identify and define the problem: While this sounds like basic advice, it is very important to do. By clearly defining the problem, you will be able to find a workable solution – without creating new problems.
  1. Gather and analyze information: The more information you can collect around the issue, the better.  You will be able to make quicker and better decisions.
  1. Develop options: While the first course of action you think up might be best, take time to develop options, even if you don’t think you’ll need them.
  1. Choose the best option: To choose the best option, consider how all of the options align with your goals; what they will cost; timing; risks; and the opinion of others.
  1. Take action: Choose your option, and act on it.
  1. Evaluate the decision: Review progress and conduct a final evaluation to fully understand the results of your decision.

Following these 6 steps can really help you break major challenges, issues, or problems into manageable steps. Your success and reputation depend on your ability to make good decisions, so try using this process to make it easier.

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