Do you make decisions that you are “comfortable” with? Do you weigh those decision that are comfortable, to see how they compare with what is most important? While going with your intuition is fine when deciding what to eat for dinner, when it comes to complexity, a decision process that helps remove decision biases should be mandatory!
You see, when people make decisions, they often make them using the right half of the brain (such as using intuition), and use the left side of the brain to articulate the decision (such as logic). Doing this alone is likely fine for smaller, less complex decisions, but when you are deciding on something that contains multiple facets to consider (cost, personnel, location, timeliness, etc.), a decision making process will help remove some of the bias and result in greater decision success rates. Who doesn’t want solid success rates?
One of the biggest decision biases is that of the status quo – otherwise known as the “comfort zone syndrome”. This occurs when people prefer anything that perpetuates the existing state – status quo. Studies indicate that people often overvalue the status quo because stepping outside of one’s comfort zone is emotionally uncomfortable.
Why is moving from status quo so uncomfortable, you ask? Fantastic question! Moving away from the comfort zone into a more methodical, repeatable process increases ones’ responsibility and potentially opens them up for criticism if the decision doesn’t work out. Utilizing the “status quo” way alleviates much of the responsibilities and places them on a consensus “group” to hold the blame if things don’t go as desired. What many fail to realize, however, is that utilizing a process-based approach actually minimized risk because it considers key stakeholders as part of the process – or should, at least. When key stakeholders are brought in early-on into the decision-making process, they are more likely to approve of the outcome and to trust you and your organization more.
How has your business, or your organization decided upon the most complex decisions that have multiple factors to consider?