Decision-making is a skill that every individual will need to use at some stage in their life and people often say that they find it hard to make good decisions.
Unfortunately, we all have to make decisions all the time. Some decisions have little to no impact, while some decisions can change your life for good or for worse.
To prove you are good at decision making, you will need to make the best choice in the shortest time possible, and be able to show reasons that support your decisions.
Learning how to improve decision-making skills can lead to many benefits and fewer mistakes.
What are Decision-Making Skills?
Definition according to the principles of management
Decision making is selecting the best of all possible solutions for the problems or situations you have to get the best results or output.
Decision making is an important skill and is important if you wish to be an outstanding leader.
If you possess good decision-making skills, then you will hardly go wrong with the decisions you make for professional and personal growth. An individual can learn and improve decision-making skills with time and experience.
Few Skills which you need to make a good decision are:
- Active listening
- Interpersonal skills
- Good Communication skills
- Critical Thinking skills
- Problem-Solving skills
- Analytical Thinking skills
Why are Decision-Making skills important?
Decision making is crucial to the functioning of an organization, or any life for that matter, and no individual can avoid that. This skill paves the pathways to a bright future.
Having the skill to make a fast, yet the effective decision is imperative in all life situations. To be an effective leader, decision-making skills are essential.
Here are 5 reasons why decision-making skills are so important:
- It Saves Time
- It Fosters Respect
- It Serves as Motivation
- It Prevents Conflict
- It Increases Productivity
How To Be Good At Decision-Making Skills
Making a good decision requires you to ensure a few things. If you do them all with all your important decisions, you will get better results.
To learn how to be good at decision-making skills, you need to follow all the steps mentioned below.
1. Using Rational Thinking
Draw together all the information about the situation
First, understand the problem or situation. Talk with those who are involved and try finding out all the information you may need to make a good decision. Prioritize the most important pieces of information first and then make a decision with available information
Avoid making impetuous or emotional decisions.
If you are emotionally involved in the issue and make your decisions based on emotions then your decision-making skills can be questioned.
So, take a step back when you know you may act out of emotion and instead use careful rational thinking.
Give yourself time before making a decision
Often, you may feel rushed to make decisions. Either the decision can be big or small but as all decisions are important it is better to take time and do careful examinations before you make your decision.
Look at the situation from a short-term and long-term perspective.
Often, you may be so focused on the short-term problems that you don’t look at the situation from a long-term perspective. Being short-sighted will probably have a negative impact in the long-run. So think from both the perspective and then use rational thinking ability to make good decisions
2. Finding Support and Advice
Talk with friends, family, or experts.
If you are finding it hard to make a decision, consider taking help and support from family, friends, experts, or people who can clarify a tricky situation. People who have faced a similar problem or situation may suggest the best solutions, try taking their help.
Write the pros and cons
This is the most common and effective decision-making technique of all. Write all the positive and negative aspects of the problem on a paper and analyze it carefully. If you are still finding it difficult to make your decision, take advice from people with experience and then make your own decision.
3. Evaluating Your Options
Know the costs and benefits of the situation
For each decision that you make, whether you’re buying something, planning your career, or making life decisions, it’s important to assess the costs and benefits. This can be easily done by knowing the pros and cons of the situation.
It will also help you understand how your decision may affect you financially, professionally, emotionally, or physically.
Look for alternative solutions.
Try to find all the alternative solutions to every situation or problem. Then make your Plan A, B, and C. This will help you make the right decision as you can analyze the entire outcome if you have alternative solutions and if plan A does not work, then you have a backup plan which can also come handy.
Be prepared for the possibility of errors.
Being prepared for the possibility of error that could arise anytime during the problem will make you less stressed.
Have a backup plan in your head so that you are not taken by surprise because of any error and also plan for a “worst-case scenario” about a situation.
4. Make Your Move
Choose among alternatives and take action:
After all the evaluation, you need to select the best solution suitable for the situation. You can also make use of combining 2 or more alternatives if required and then make your decision.
Review your decision and its effects:
After you made your decision by using your decision-making skills, review the result or outcome of your decision, and see if you have made the right decision. In case you are not satisfied with the outcome then, you must repeat a few steps to make a new decision.
We all have to make decisions in our life whether it is small or not and to become good at decision-making skills one must learn and improve few skills like Active listening, Interpersonal skills, Good Communication Skills, Critical Thinking Skills, Problem-Solving Skills, Analytical Thinking Skills, and Creativity.
With the combination of all these skills along with Rational Thinking, you can make good decisions.
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