Project Leadership Success: Responsibilities, Competencies and Behaviors That Produce Positive Results – Part 5 of 10

Competencies: Making Effective Decisions

Decisions must be made with a commitment to seeing them through. Effective decisions can be made by fixing attention on a few major decisions rather than a lot of little ones, along with focusing on making “right” decisions. Good decision makers define these four attributes for more effective decision making:

1. Understand the problem. Is the problem specific or general in nature? Is the right solution being applied to the right problem?

2. Understand the limits. What are the correct objectives? What conditions must be satisfied? The clearer the goals, the more likely a decision will accomplish what is intended.

3. Convert the decision into action. What action needs to be taken? Who needs to know about this decision and who will implement it?

4. Devise a feedback loop to measure results against expectations. Decisions must be examined and reexamined continually. Examination and feedback are both a necessity. While these factors can aid decision making by clarifying issues and providing guideposts, some decisions require more in-depth consideration. Project leaders must often measure and evaluate alternatives so that divergent opinions can be weighed and facts tested before reaching any conclusions.

 Finally, it would be remiss not to mention another valid alternative in the decision-making process: Doing nothing. Not every decision requires action. (from Drucker, Peter F., The Effective Executive, Harper and Row, pgs. 109-116, 1967.)

For my next post I will be looking at a third competency of successful leaders – applying Emotional Intelligence.

James L. Haner

To learn more, download the complete article  – Leadership Success: Behaviors, Competencies and Responsibilities That Produce Positive Results. – Competencies – written by James Haner documenting the three competencies of a successful leader.

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