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Play 8 - Be decisive and involve others whenever possible

There will be many times where you will have to make a decision without all of the information available. Asking clarifying questions and quickly gathering/assessing data helps get you to a point where you can reasonably move forward. You will never collect all of the information: plan based on what you do know, understand current requirements and goals, and be ready to adjust.

There are numerous ways to make a decision, and it is important to know and understand the pros and cons of each. Take time to learn and review the , external,TTS-only, decision-making models outlined in the People Cards guide. This will help you prepare for the future, be intentional about your approach, and choose the appropriate decision-making method for the situation.

Highly collaborative decision-making, such as consensus, is time consuming and not always possible. At minimum, try to seek input from others so that everyone feels respected and heard, and you have taken advantage of the expertise of others who are more knowledgeable than you. This will help you make an informed decision and one that will likely be accepted by others, even if not everyone agrees with it. Only make unilateral decisions as a last resort, as they can erode trust.

If you are solely responsible for something that requires a decision, then a unilateral decision may be your only option - and that’s fine! However, if there are any opportunities to solicit input or do some research beforehand, you’ll be better served by having a clearer picture of the state of things before moving forward. Communicating your intent and reasoning is also crucial to building trust.

Once you make a decision, follow through with it. Stay on top of action items and key deliverables, check in on progress, and stick to the plan as much as possible. When presented with new information, be sure to assess and communicate any changes or adjustments as early as possible. Shifting direction is fine, but you want to minimize surprises and maintain expectations as much as possible

Action Items

  • Review recent decisions made on your team:
    • What was successful?
    • What was challenging?
    • What will you keep doing, and what will you do differently?
  • Create actionable goals to help improve your decision-making skills. For example: “decrease unilateral decisions about product design, in favor of consensus-based models.”

Play 8 Reflection Questions

  • What are some ways in which you have empowered yourself by making a decision?
  • How do you empower others by being a macro manager?

Play 8 Case Studies

  • You have been assigned to work on a new project but are reluctant to integrate the team into the process because you want to avoid additional complexity and a potential clash of opinions that happens often. How will you handle this situation?
  • You’ve heard from multiple supervisors during supervisor meetings that they don’t understand how your team supports the overall vision and mission of the organization. Your team handles tasks that are non-client-facing, unlike other teams. How will you approach this pushback?
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