By | Toma Bonev
We make decisions all the time. We think about what to choose between different options and consider what decisions would lead to the best outcomes depending on the information we have. In some cases, though, we do not know whether these decisions are the best or will lead to the desired outcomes. For this reason, we need a blueprint for comparing choices and decisions to ensure successful outcomes.
Identify the End Goal
Why are you making the decision, and what do you wish to achieve after this process? Is this decision necessary right now? These are the first questions you should try to answer.
The end goal can be as simple as ending up with the best software for your business, or as complex as ensuring your business ends up in the right hands through a sale or merger.
Understanding how you want things to turn out once you complete this process will put you in a better position to make the best decisions to achieve that goal.
What Are Your Choices?
Once you have identified your goals, you need to know your choices. Conduct thorough research and talk to relevant stakeholders to be left with a few options that you can add to a comparison chart template before starting the comparison.
As you do this, you should eliminate options that seem like a good idea at first glance but would not be a great fit for your business. Also, consider checking out what your competitors are doing if it is relevant to your situation.
Discuss the Different Options
Before scheduling a meeting to discuss the different options with your team, compile all the information and data you have gathered from your research into the decisions or choices you want to discuss. You should already have your thoughts on them so you can contribute, too.
Once team members gather, compare the data you have on the different options. As you do so, list their pros and cons for additional discussion. You can also add these to your comparison chart to see if different options share upsides and downsides. This exercise will also make it easier to eliminate some of them when it is time to do so.
Choose and Execute the Decision
You might have to go through several discussion and elimination rounds. Once done, you should have the best decision to ensure success or that fits with what you want to achieve. If you are satisfied, the only thing left will be to execute the decision, which requires taking the intended actions or provisioning the required resources.
Refine Your Decision-making Processes
Each round of decision-making should teach you something new about comparing and evaluating options and making the right decisions with the help of the right stakeholders. Take note of what you hear so you can use it in future decision-making exercises.
Faced with a decision with different choices and outcomes, comparing them all will help you choose the best one. Gathering enough data for this exercise and using tools like comparison charts will make this process infinitely easier. Also, involve crucial stakeholders to ensure you have enough data and insight to make the best decision.