#16 Avoid a Pitfall: Be Transparent About Your Decision-Making

 

You might be a manager speaking to subordinates, a coach talking to players, or a respected older sibling being consulted. When you have different priorities than others who you have some influence or control over, how do you work out differences?

In every case your approach will lie somewhere on the continuum of telling the others what to do at one end, and deciding together what should happen at the other end. More concisely, your approach will lie on a continuum between directing and collaborating.

This is a rich continuum of possible practices. Problems arise in relationships from not being transparent about what approach you are using. One of the worst and most common errors is to gather your team together to consult with them over a decision giving the impression that they will influence your decision-making process. Then, without any later explanation, decide on a different course of action than they suggested. Your team will tend to feel that their input was not valued and you may lose some of their trust.

You are much better off to say at the outset, “I think I have made up my mind, but I want your input in case I have missed something.” Or as another possibility, “I want to hear your views. I am going to digest them, and then come up with a decision.” Below is a list of possible approaches on a continuum towards greater inclusion of input in decision-making.

 

A list of possible approaches on a continuum towards greater inclusion of input on decision-making.

A list of possible approaches on a continuum towards greater inclusion of input on decision-making.

 

Each approach is appropriate depending upon circumstances. When you are in a leadership role I believe that you gain from being transparent about how the input of others will configure into a decision. It enables those on your team or in a group to know how to bring themselves to the conversation. You will get more value from their input. And, you are maintaining clarity of roles within that circumstance. I suggest you try being more transparent about how decisions are being made and observe the effect.

Let me know what you learn.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Comment