Making decisions is an integral part of life, yet many find it challenging. However, the ability to be decisive is a valuable skill that can be developed and honed over time. Today, I present the leader’s guide to help us becoming more decisive. In this guide, we will explore strategies to help you become more decisive in your personal and professional life as a leader of your team.
Expand Your Options 👀
A common roadblock to decisiveness is the perception that choices are limited to just two options. In reality, there’s often a multitude of possibilities. To become more decisive, challenge yourself to think creatively about the problem at hand. Explore various alternatives and consider different perspectives.
Create a Decision-Making System ✅
One effective approach to enhance decisiveness is to establish a decision-making framework or process. This framework can include:
- Setting criteria for what constitutes a good decision.
- Collecting relevant information and seeking input from others.
- Weighing the pros and cons of different options.
By following a systematic approach, you can make decisions more confidently.
Align with Your Values 🧘♂
Mindfulness and staying present can significantly aid in decision-making. By focusing on the current moment, you can eliminate distractions and concentrate on what truly matters in the decision-making process. This practice also allows you to trust your instincts and make choices aligned with your values and goals.
Seek Support 🤝
Don’t hesitate to seek support from friends, family, or mentors when faced with important decisions. These individuals can provide valuable insights, advice, and accountability. Discuss your mission, vision, and goals with them to make decisions that align with your long-term objectives.
Helping Your Team Make Decisions 🌱
When you’re part of a team, effective decision-making becomes a collective effort. Here’s a simple framework to help your team make decisions efficiently (I borrowed it from Kahil Lechelt who borrowed it from Ali Merchant :).
First of all, every decision needs an owner and a timeline. If nobody owns the decision, it often gets dragged out.
- Assign decision ownership and set clear deadlines for each decision.
- Distinguish between three types of decisions: Type 1 (You decide), Type 2 (You decide with team input), and Type 3 (A team member decides).
- Communicate the type of decision to your team and provide guidance accordingly.
There are 3 types of decisions:
1: You make the decision.
2: You make the decision with team input.
3: An individual on the team decides.
How to implement this?
Brief your team on the three types of decisions. When you encounter a situation where the team needs to make the decision, tell them:
“Team, this is a Type 3 decision. Please identify a decision owner and bring me your decision by end of Friday.”
When you encounter a situation where you need to make a decision but need the team’s input, tell them:
“Team, this is a Type 2 decision. Let’s discuss for 20min, list all pros and cons, and I will give you a decision by end of Friday.”
When you encounter a situation where you have to make a decision on your own, i.e., because of urgency or the subject matter, tell them:
“Team, I’m making a Type 1 decision. Here’s what we’re doing, and here is the reason for it.”
Assisting Individuals in Decision-Making 🚀
When helping an individual make a decision, follow these steps to help them and you to understand they train of thoughts.
Clarifying questions from you as a leader:
- What is the decision?
- What data is needed for the decision?
- Do you have the data? (if not, go get it)
- What decision would YOU make with that data?
- Do you still need to ask for a decision or did you just make it?
If you have gotten to Step 5 and they still need a decision, then the correct structure for asking it is as below. You can propose it as the template when they come to you with the request to make sure they got it right.
The outcome of the person who comes to you with the proposed decision:
- This is the decision I want
- Here is the data for making that decision
- Here is my own recommendation, given the data in point 2
- Please let me know if you agree
Lessons Learned 🎓
Becoming more decisive is a journey that requires time and practice. By implementing these strategies and remaining committed to improving your decision-making abilities, you can make choices confidently and effectively. Embrace decisiveness and seize your opportunities. I hope this leader’s guide to becoming more decisive will help you with your journey.
I am going to leave you with a quote from Cicero.
“More is lost by indecision than wrong decision. Indecision is the thief of opportunity. It will steal you blind.”— Cicero
Thanks for reading!
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