Growing Leaders: Decisions
March 17, 2015
by Steven Grabiner
It happens all the time; two people make the exact opposite decision, and both think it is for the best. A football team fires their coach, and another team hires him right away. One person sells a stock, and another buys it. In both instances, and many more besides, everyone thinks they are making a good decision. It is only later, much later in some cases, that it will be seen whether these were, in fact, good decisions. Only hindsight can judge whether some decisions were right or wrong.
However, we can create a good decision-making process, which will help guide our choices. While there are always many variables, a good process can enhance the probability of good decisions. To increase the likelihood of arriving at a good choice, it is helpful to broaden our perspective. One way to change our frame of reference is to ask, “What would I tell my closest friend if he/she were asking my advice in this matter?” It is astonishing how quickly we might be able to answer that question, when we have been struggling with the same issue. By thinking of the situation in relation to a friend, we have shifted the focus and seen things in a different light.
In a work-related environment, we might ask, “If I were replaced, what would my replacement do?” Once again, by changing the frame, we begin to weigh the decision confronting us from a different perspective. That shifting of perspectives helps our decision-making process from being too narrow or constricted.
Time will tell how the decision plays out over the coming months or years, but by thinking of the process itself, we can raise the probability of coming to a good decision.