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Ways for Leaders to Improve Decision Making Skills

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Decision making skills are vital to business leaders.

The ability to make quick and intelligent decisions is an asset in almost any type of business. Company leaders need to be able to think on their feet in a fast-paced business world where dozens of decisions must be made every work day. There are some surprising ways to improve decision making ability.

Practice Making Simple Decisions

In order to make big decisions, you must first trust yourself to make small decisions. Practice making quick decisions when ordering in a restaurant, picking a paint color for your office, or which color pants to purchase. In his book “Improving Student’s Decision Making Skills,” decisions researchers Robin S. Gregory and Robert T. Clemen suggests that people must learn that quick decisions sometimes receive a positive outcome.

Play Video Games

Playing video games can improve your ability to make decisions. Daphne Bavelier, a researcher and cognitive neuroscientist at the University of Rochester, said in an article at MSNBC that action video games can help people improve the speed and accuracy of decision making. The next time you need a break at work, try turning on the X-box and firing up the latest action gaming adventure.

Enhance Research Skills

The ability to conduct in-depth research allows you to understand the different facets of a problem before making a decision. Decisions that might impact your company long-term should be researched thoroughly. Enhance research skills by taking careful notes and asking others for points of view you might not have considered in your initial research.

See Problems Before They Arise

Learn to think ahead and analyze what issues might arise from a decision. For example, if the company merges with another company, how might that impact employees? Will customers be upset? How can you reach out to the customers to ease their fears and concerns? The ability to see potential problems before they arise helps you make the best decisions possible.

Commit to Your Decision

Once you’ve made the decision, stick to it. Waffling back and forth between two options will only confuse employees or customers. If the decision turns out to be the wrong one, admit it, make a new decision and then move forward.

Don’t Be Afraid to Postpone a Decision

Although making fast decisions is beneficial in some situations, if you do not have enough information to make an informed decision, then it might be best to delay a final choice until you’re able to do more research. Getting in touch with experts and holding meetings with colleagues takes time. Don’t be scared to put off a decision until you feel ready to make it.


Improving Student’s Decision Making Skills: by Robin S. Gregory and Robert T. Clemen

MSNBC.com: ‘Grand Theft Auto’ May Improve Decision-Making Skills


Lori Soard has worked online designing websites, writing, editing and promoting clients since 1997. Through Promo Warriors, she's consulted with over 100 clients to help them figure out what online presence works best for them. In addition to helping people learn how to start their own businesses, she writes feel-good books about the way love and the world should be.