Problem-solving and decision-making are two of the most effective skills you can develop as a manager. When you think about it, what are you doing most of the day, other than solving problems and making decisions?
So what parameters might you be working under and how can you start making effective decisions with your team?
Naturally, it all depends on the situation, but there are guidelines you can use to identify the best way to make decisions. Here are just a few:
If you’re under extreme time pressure:
Think about using a directive style, as any other may not yield results in time. Remember though that you might gain compliance but not commitment.
How important is it to have full commitment from the team?:
If it needs commitment, consider a consensus agreement with team members, remembering it will take more time
Can the team make the decision?:
If not, maybe someone with expertise can be brought in from another department or from outside. This has to be agreed by the team to gain commitment.
Do team members need to be involved in the decision-making process?:
Some of the team may be able to take responsibility and accountability, and remember to gain the agreement of all team members for this to work effectively.
Assess how much team involvement is needed:
If you have full agreement of the team to allow you to make decisions, then ensure you have a firm process for communicating decisions.
Do you need full commitment from all the team?:
If so, you need to consider how best to sell the decision to the team. Remember, they will commit to most things if they see the benefits and opportunities that go with the decisions.
Always tell the team the process you will go through to make the decisions. This will help your team gain confidence that your chosen method will be right for all concerned, and you’ll get the support you need to implement the decision.
Mark Williams is a learning and development professional, using business psychology and multiple intelligences to create fascinating and quickly-identifiable learning initiatives in the real-world business setting. Mark’s role at MTD is to ensure that our training is leading edge, and works closely with our trainers to develop the best learning experiences for all people on learning programmes. Mark designs and delivers training programmes for businesses both small and large and strives to ensure that MTD’s clients are receiving the very best training, support and services that will really make a difference to their business.