Nearly everyone I’ve met has experienced making decisions that they regret later on in life. Some may say that they haven’t made a decision that they’ve regretted. They are either lying, or they haven’t actually done any decision making in their life(which is impossible). Both these kinds of people need tips on how to decide correctly. Let’s be clear here, by “correctly” I mean making the most informed decision based on the information available at the time. For all your preparation, you may still get blind sided by some aspect of the problem you never thought about. Most folks employ random decision making techniques rather than actually putting their mental faculties to work thus they often regret the path they chose. It is precisely for people like that, that we have built this site and the app running on the front page.
Anyway, Would you believe that knowing how to decide correctly is actually an acquired skill?
Tips on How to Decide the Right Way
People make decisions all the time. From the moment they wake up, they’re already making decisions as to what eat, whether to take a shower or bath, ride a taxi or bus to work, and so on and so forth. In the work place, you need to make decisions on the project that you are working on (or supposed to be working on) and a thousand other situations. The question now is how to decide appropriately?
Before we go on, I would like to point out that even if you are making a random decision, you are still employing certain factors in your decision-making process to arrive at your choice. For those who want to decide correctly, here are a few tips to keep in mind.
Firstly, assess the situation. Ask yourself what is there to decide, what will happen if you don’t decide, what will the pros and cons are when you decide and so on. Second, think of how others will respond to your decision. When you make a decision will it please those you work with or will it generate a big issue? Have you even asked for insight before you tried to make a decision? We could talk about this all day. The fact (according to me) is that many bad decision are made because these decisions were made on the basis of poor information – leading to many “what the hell was I thinking !?” moments. While such moments can add great drama and excitement – they do not always end well. If you lived to talk about, might be great to also spend some time thinking about what went wrong and why.
Secondly, you should conduct a benefit or cost analysis regarding your decision. Will the benefits to be reaped be appropriate to the cost of executing your decision? What will you do if the cost exceeds that of the proposed budget with the results falling short of the expected amount? You need to factor these things when learning how to decide to come up with a better decision. This basically means have a Plan B. For really critical projects you probably should have a Plan C as well. No surprises. At least none that you could foresee. You can’t control everything for sure, but there is actually a lot more you can control that you realise, if you just think about it in the first place.
Thirdly, random decision making may be all well and good but unless you assess the risk factors, you will probably be more inclined to think things through as you want to reduce the risk you exposure yourself to. Before you make a decision, you should at least weigh whether your choice is based on your beliefs or what others want. Following what others are thinking may be more logical but are you comfortable with their decision? If you are more comfortable with your own decisions, then make the right choice and follow what your gut says even if it doesn’t receive accolades from your colleagues. It has been scientifically proven that herd mentality or swarm intelligence is high on risk to the individual making up a part of the gathering, yet swarm mentality is also change averse. This is because, swarm intelligence is designed to maximise the survival of the entire swarm with little regards to the survival of each individual citizen. This means that if 10 locusts have to die to protect the swarm, the swarm will readily give them up and not bother to look for a work around solution. Humans are the same – the only difference being if you are making a decision that affects you – then the only one set to lose anything is you, despite the opinion of the herd.
And finally, you should make decisions once you’ve applied the steps mentioned above. Even if you have limited information on hand, you should make do with what you have to arrive at the best decision there is.