What’s the secret to good decision-making?

Decision-making is the central part of your new job. As a manager you’ll be making decisions on a daily basis, many of them about issues you’ve never had to deal with before, some of which may seem dauntingly large. It’s important to put in place, if only in your own head, a systematic process for decision-making, which will help avoid the paralysis that big decisions (or an endless stream of small ones) can sometimes cause. Also remember to take advice, as broadly as is feasible, but don’t forget that in the end, the decisions are down to you. A good thought process for decision-making would run something like this:

  • clarify the problem;
  • identify its causes;
  • seek out a variety of possible solutions; and finally
  • weigh them up and select one.

It may sound obvious, but a process like this can help break down tough questions in stressful conditions. Once you’ve made your decision, take the necessary action and stick to your choice. Inevitably, you will make the wrong decisions sometimes, but the more decisions you make the better you’ll get at it. Being indecisive, on the other hand, will give you a very short career as a manager. The clearer your decisions are, the more you’ll be respected by both your team and your bosses.

Note: This content is provided as general background information and should not be taken as legal advice or financial advice for your particular situation. Make sure to get individual advice on your case from your union, a source on our free help page or an independent financial advisor before taking any action.