Sunday, September 09, 2007

Making Decisions

On Friday a colleague and I delivered a workshop for our staff on making decisions.

We took people through a few approaches, frameworks and tools around decision making including Six Thinking Hats, our internal Design approach, SCAMPER, Force Field Analysis and a few others.

We had a good conversation around approaches to decision making and mainly talked about:

  • Autocratic
  • Democratic
  • Participative
  • Consensus.

The main discussion was around saying that despite the fact we may have a default approach, at any time people will use all of these approaches to achieve the desired outcomes.

Dave Snowden of Cognitive Edge is about to have a co-written article published that he has written about on his blog, about different management styles that are more successful than others in simple, complicated, complex and chaotic environments (Cynefin Framework).

I suppose it's up to people to be aware of alternative approaches and also to be self aware of the situations they find themselves in. All too often people just do things that have worked for them in the past with very mixed results.

The number of times I have heard people at conferences saying that if people just follow a simple process or do things the same way it will guarantee success starts to grate on my nerves. This may be right in some cases but definitely not when you are playing in complex space.

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