Decision-making overload is a common experience among managers. But you can process choices more efficiently and achieve better outcomes by using a checklist:
- Write down five benefits of the decision (or things it will impact). This helps provide clarity quickly.
- Write down at least three realistic alternatives. Why wouldn’t you?
- List the challenges, obstacles and downsides of the choices you have. Being explicit about these is invaluable. Also with a binary choice it helps to assess pros and cons by listing each issue and assigning a weighting (1 – 10).
- Write down the most important information you are missing. – Write down the impact your decision will have a year from now.
- Get buy-in from a team of at least two (but no more than five) stakeholders. Hearing different perspectives reduces your bias, but bigger groups have diminishing returns.
- Write down what was decided, why and how much the team supports the decision. This increases commitment and helps you measure results.
- Schedule a follow-up to make course corrections.
What else? How do you make better decisions, faster?