Set up your most important decisions for success

January 4, 2011

Many companies struggle to make and execute key decisions. Our Decision Insights series describes a five-step process that can boost your organization’s decision effectiveness and improve its performance. In this issue, we explain how the third step enables companies to reset individual decisions so that they work smoothly and effectively. We think of the four parts of this process as fixing the What, Who, How, and When of the decision. The article summarized below will help you address each one.

By Marcia W. Blenko, Michael C. Mankins and Paul Rogers

Too many organizations fail to make and execute their critical decisions well, and their performance suffers as a result. But you can reset key decisions to get them working better. The key is to focus on just four elements:

  • Clarify the what of the decision. Help everyone understand exactly what decision is under consideration.
  • Determine the who. Specify who will play the key roles—recommending a course of action, offering input, signing off on the recommendation, making the decision and then executing it.
  • Understand the how. Establish a clear process for gathering data, agreeing on criteria and preparing alternatives.
  • Make the when explicit. Create clear timelines for making the decision—and executing it.

The four steps together are a great way to cut through logjams and get things working more effectively. We describe each step in detail and show how companies apply them in our book Decide & Deliver, and on the website

Download the PDF

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