Steps for Effective Decision Making Process

Dr. Purushothaman
October 13, 2013

Instead of making it "a loser," make it "a winner." Yes, effective decision making determines the destiny of your life. I know you have many decisions to make in life. Some are tough like, "Should I quit my job to venture into business?" Some are simple like, "Should I log in Facebook to update my status or to twitter?"

The choices you make have consequences. There are issues that require you to ponder for a while in order to come up with a list of alternative choices so as to select the best answer. What I mean here is that decision making is a course of action consciously chosen from available alternatives for the purpose of achieving desired results.

When you decide, it means that you have made a conclusion or resolution to what you expect to do later. Decision making is an indispensable part of life. Leaders are expected to make effective decisions for their followers. In organizations, decision making is the core managerial activity. Managers should possess the necessary skills when it comes to effective decision making.

If you have got complex decisions to make, it is better you follow effective steps of solving the problem.

Seven Effective Decision Making Steps

1.) Identifying the Problem

The first step is for you to identify and define the problem. A problem is a question that requires appropriate solution. Here, you find the limiting factors and obstacles.

2.) Analyzing the Problem

In the second step, you're supposed to analyze the problem. Gather the necessary information or data regarding that problem.

3.) Develop a List of Alternative Solutions

After analyzing the problem, you should develop a list of the alternative answers that solves the problem. There are resources that are of great help in developing the list such as the internet etc.

4.) Selecting the Best Alternative

From the list of alternative choices, select the best choice. From the list, compare the consequences of each choice. When selecting the best choice, bear in mind the risk element of each choice against your expected gain. Do proper timing of your decisions.

5.) Execution of the Best Choice

In this step, you put the best choice on action. Communicate properly to your subordinates by being clear, concise and in an understandable manner regarding the choice.

6.) Follow Up

Keep following up with the progress on how the decision is being implemented. You exercise this through proper control. This helps you in detecting the areas that require improvement or modification before the whole decision comes to halt.

7.) Monitoring and Feedback

The last step is to get feedback. Feedback from your subordinates helps you to determine the effectiveness of the implemented decision. If possible, you should come up with a mechanism that gives you periodic reports on the success of its implementation.

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