How to Make Better DecisionsAll leaders are not created equal when it comes to their decision-making skills. Nothing will test your leadership strength more than your ability to make decisions.

“Making a decision is one of the most powerful acts for inspiring confidence in leaders and managers. Yet many bosses are squeamish about it,” says Scott Halford, contributor to Entrepreneur.

Decision-making is a skill that needs to be developed like any other. Halford shares some tips to help make quick, more calculated decisions.

Trust Your Instinct

Halford suggests leaders leap without all the answers and trust you’ll be able to build your wings on the way down. This is an emotional filter that doesn't have hard analytical support. However, it can sometimes be all a leader has to go on when they need to make a decision. For instance, when you need to decide between vendors, you examine references and prices, but the final decision often rests with your gut.

Think On Your Own

Halford says good decision makers are collaboratively independent. Consider what truly needs to be decided on and ask these two questions:

  1. What is the crux of problem you need to solve or the opportunity you want to capture?
  2. Will the decision advance overall goals?

Surround yourself with smart, trusted colleagues and ask them pointed questions so you can ask their opinion. If time is of the essence, get your information from credible sources and act quickly.

Turn Off Your Mind

Give your brain the opportunity to find the information already stored, Halford suggests. It’s similar to when you can’t remember the name of a movie or the artist of a song. You know the information, but you've just forgotten it at the moment. Then it randomly plops in your head when you've stopped thinking.

Fess Up

If you make a mistake, admit it and correct the error. If you make the wrong decision and fess up, you earn more respect and loyalty. Also, make sure you have a backup plan. Great leaders know all plans are made up of constants and variables. Sometimes those variables work against you and it’s smart to always have a contingency plan. No “plan B” equals a flawed plan.

Every day we are faced with decisions, from the trivial to the important. We’ve all made our fair share of regrettable decisions, but if you are aware of the things that lead you down the wrong path and ways to get it right, you are able to make better decisions.

Do you have any other advice or suggestions on decision making skills? 

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