Basicsof Decision Making According to Oxford AdvancedLearner’s dictionary International Students Edition (2015), decision makingis described as the process of deciding about something important, especially in a groupof people or in an organization. The basics of decision making lie in both instinct and analysiswhich brings up to the question, “on which way should we follow?” The answer depends onthe situation.
Jonah Lehrer in his book “How WeDecide (2009)” states that, “ever since the ancient Greeks, theseassumptions have revolved around a single theme: humans are rational”. When making decisions one is supposed to deliberateand analyse other probable advantages and disadvantages. Humanbeings are known to be conscious and analytical creatures. However our intellect does notalways help us to make the best decisions as most of the times we find ourselves choosing thewrong ones. When we are faced with choices to make, we look at other situations wehave encountered before, and most of us make decisions based on our prior experiences on what worked for us ordidn’t. William JosephSlim (1891 –1970) believes that “Whenyou cannot make up your mind which of two evenly balanced courses of action you should take- choose the bolder.
” When one realizes that a decision has tobe made, they have to identify ways to collect information to aid themin making the right choices. Information can be gathered from friends, priorexperiences, books and many more sources. It’s good to note that, previousfailures play a bigrole in deciding on what options to adopt. Look for alternatives and if possible list themdown. Weigh the pro and cons of each alternative identified and scale down to the ones you feelare closer to the answers you need.
Prioritize them by the help of your intuition, narrowdown and choose the alternative you feel will serve the purpose; this is the most difficult part in the whole process. Rememberif one chooses not to make a decision it is also a decisionby itself and may have explicit consequences. According to RobertK. Greenleaf, the authorof the essay “Servant as Leader (1970)”he believes that: “On an important decision onerarely has 100% of the information needed for a good decision no matter how much one spends or how long onewaits. And, if one waits too long, he has a different problem andhas to start all over. This is the terrible dilemma of the hesitant decision maker.” So, nomatter the circumstances, one must make choices and wait for the results.
Implement the alternatives you have chosenand wait to evaluate the results of your decisions. If your needis not met, you might be required to re-evaluate certain steps and do it all over again. And according to Theodore Roosevelt(American President 1858-1919): “In any moment of decision, the bestthing you can do is the right thing, the next best thing is the wrong thing, and the worst thing youcan do is nothing”. We all come to one agreement that, making decisions either goodor bad is inevitable.