Join Mike Figliuolo for an in-depth discussion in this video Making participatory decisions, part of Decision-Making Strategies.
- The second style of decision you can make is participatory. This is where you're going to make a decision with input from the people who are going to be impacted in that final call. Remember, participatory decisions are made when the decision is much bigger; there's a lot more risk involved. Getting that additional information from more people is going to reduce that decision making risk. Also by getting that buy in, you're reducing execution risk because people have had an opportunity to give their input and have a say in the final call that's made.
As far as that final call, in participatory decision making, there's still that smaller decision making authority. It may be an individual or a smaller group. That aspect of it can feel a little autocratic, but we've gotten input along the way. Those individuals are going to interact with each other as this decision is being made. Getting all the people in the room so they can hear each other's perspectives is going to help you drive to a better decision.
Allow me to offer an example. Recently, in my firm, we looked at raising prices on some of the services that we offer. This is a really big decision and it has a huge impact on the financials of my firm. I couldn't rush off and just make an autocratic decision without getting input from the other people I work with. We sat down, we had a conversation, we weighed the pros and cons, people had their say, they brought up things that I hadn't thought of, and we highlighted some risks that we were going to have to mitigate along the way.
Ultimately, as the leader of the firm, I had to make that call, but I got the input from the people who were going to be involved in executing the decision, so we get better execution on the back end. As you think about making decisions in a participatory environment, remember, you should be using this style where the decisions are bigger, you have a little bit more time to make it because you need to gather more input along the way, which takes time and takes meetings. Ultimately, that smaller decision making body is going to make the call.
- Choosing a decision-making style
- Involving stakeholders
- Managing ambiguity and outcomes
- Reducing risk
- Communicating and executing decisions
- Measuring the results of decisions