The Shift to Collaborative Decision Making

Decisions are no longer made in a vacuum. Gone are the days when top business executives are solely responsible for their organization’s most important decisions while the workforce waits for their marching orders.

Most organizations have shifted from top-down models to matrixed models of decision making. And as more people throughout an organization get involved in making major decisions, leaders must learn how to collaborate with others in a systematic way. They need to facilitate important discussions that explore all the perspectives represented from the group and how to navigate differences teammates are bound to have.

So, how do leaders ensure they get the most out of these collaborative efforts? Here are five simple steps leaders can take before they engage in collaboration:

          1. Identify their strengths and improvement areas when they’re having a decision making discussion.

          2. Use a structured approach to easily navigate a collaborative discussion.

          3. Learn how to explore other perspectives so they can authentically share their perspective with the rest of the team.

          4. Use enhanced skills and knowledge so they can approach difficult discussions with greater confidence and success.

          5. Develop action plans for improving discussions

Once leaders master these techniques for conducting collaborative conversations, they will have the confidence needed to speak comfortably with people up, down and across the organization. As a result, these conversations will become more valued and productive, and will ultimately lead to better decisions for the organization.

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