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Decision Making

If you are an executive, how many decisions do you make daily? Here is some perspective:

In an internet story by Jade Scipioni about a CNBC interview in 2020 Jeff Bezos of Amazon said. “As a senior executive, what do you really get paid to do? You get paid to make a small number of high-quality decisions,” he said.

The story continues…….”Bezos, 56, said if he makes ‘three good decisions a day, that’s enough, and they should just be as high quality as I can make them.’ Things were different when Amazon was a start-up in the mid-1990s, he said. During that time, Bezos had to make hundreds of decisions a day and was even packing shipments and dropping them off at the post office himself.”

Typical of many complicated questions, the answer to the original question is that “it depends”. The pace of the business is one factor (This writer may have been in the “hundreds a day” category when in a management position in a large automotive assembly plant.) Therefore it is a reasonable assumption that the president or owner of a medium-sized business will make at least 10 relevant decisions per day (At 47 weeks that is 2350/year).

This seems light, but using these numbers, how many of the 2350 do we get right? Some will say that getting 50% right is a good average. What are the consequences of the wrong decisions? Worse yet, do we still have a business with cherished customers and superior team members?

Assuming we are still viable, is there something we can do to improve our decision-making performance by 20%? What if you could participate in a specially facilitated group that provides ongoing decision-making improvement?

· Each participant can present a problem requiring a decision

· Facilitator provides professional guidance to properly frame the problem

· There is confirmation of the results of what has been tried previously

· Then the panel of experts can ask cause and effect questions

· After the questions there is a brief pause while the panel members contemplate what has been learned from the dialogue.

· Then the facilitator asks each panel member to offer a solution to the problem presenter.

· The problem presenter can leave the session with as many as 10-12 recommended solutions.

· The best solution option (or a combination of options) is implemented.

· The problem solver observes the results and makes any necessary adjustments in the solution implementation.

· At the following meeting the original problem presenter reports results and gets feedback from the panel of peers.

· The original problem presenter is also a panel member and observes this process occurrence repeatedly started by other problem presenters (a continuous learning process).

· As a foundation of reference each of the panel members has a customized strategic plan, a worthy set of values endorsed by the group and a research based list of essential success factors.

Well, there is such a group that has been providing this service and more for 20 years. Here is the website - It is important that an immediate problem gets solved, but the greatest long term value is helping each member develop improved decision-making skills.

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