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7.5: Make and Implement Decisions Effectively?

When the information is incomplete, it begets a risky environment for the managers who have to rely on past experience and intuition, which may prove inadequate. With an eternal restlessness and focus on making deadlines, often managers are forced to stick to a tried-and-tested method of decision making, which will provide the optimal solution. A wrong decision can jeopardize careers and cost the organization losses, most in finances and credibility.

For example, due to recent changes in sociological conditions, the living room has now been replaced by the kitchen as suitable location for family gatherings. Hence, customers now demand furniture that can be used in the kitchen and has aesthetic qualities as well. This unique blend of comfort, cleanliness, and culinary activities makes the job of IKEA managers that much difficult, as the parameters vary with their varying demographic. Different countries have different interpretations of comfort, cleanliness and such; which makes the right decision even trickier to formulate.

So how would you effectively manage a situation? Let’s find out.

Man is the measure of all things. Hence the best way to make a decision for a particular situation in a particular setting is to understand and appreciate all the values, beliefs and biases of the people who are going to be affected by the decision. There is no surefire way to make a decision; the manager has to understand the sentiments of the consumers and act accordingly.

Many experts agree that every effective decision has the following characteristics:

  • Problem-oriented
  • Consistent and logical
  • Astute and analytical
  • Opinion-friendly, unbiased and information-based
  • Easy to implement and amend.
  • Made with a combination of decision-making styles; preferably through subjective and objective line of thinking.

Learn when to pull the plug on an ineffective decision. Many decisions don’t go the expected way, and managers tend to get hung up on it, hemorrhaging resources due to it. This can be very disastrous for all parties involved. If a chosen alternative is not working out, is it most prudent to learn from its shortcomings and make better decisions going forward.

The reasons for efficiency in organizational communities are owed to the fact that many highly reliable organizations develop good business habits which ensure quick adaptation and constant vigilance for the unexpected. Five habits can greatly help you build that kind of camaraderie with your subordinates:

  • Focus more on your failures than on the successes.
  • Motivate your colleagues to trust their intuitions, and build an atmosphere where every view is accepted and every concern alleviated.
  • Always pay keen attention to the feedback from the frontline workers- retailers and sales reps that have direct access to direct feedback from consumers.
  • Let the situation provide the solution. Often circumstances are beyond our comprehension and require tailor-made solutions suited to it.
  • Probe into the problems for deeper understanding. In business, the simplest way is often not the best way.
  • Be aware of your limits. It is not wise to make unexplainable decisions that wind up nose-diving.
  • It is not possible to anticipate every move the future will take. So prepare as best as you can, and collect data and reanalyze after the event to find a better solution.