Making the Right Decision
When you become a new manager, it can be tempting to make some immediate and bold decisions to prove your worth. But we know from decades of decision making tips for new managers that new supervisors are at high risk of misjudging strategies, situations, processes, people, and politics if they make decisions too quickly. The best new leaders resist the urge to act quickly and focus on listening, observing, and learning for at least the first 30-60 days.
Sure, there may be simple choices to be made or a crisis that needs to be solved immediately, but many decisions for new leaders can be complex, involve multiple stakeholders, have far-reaching implications, and seldom can you predict which of several options will be the best in the end.
5 Decision Making Tips for New Managers
Once you know that you have a decision to make, here are some decision making tips for new managers from a recent strategic decision making training workshop that can help :
They understand the impact of the decision upon their key stakeholders; they know how high a priority it is in the grand scheme of things; they identify the key risks; and they define the required time parameters.
Typical decision making criteria include factors such as ability to implement, financial, scalability, time, quality, flexibility, risk, culture and people implications, customer impact, competition, and change readiness.
Understand that you are unlikely to be able to pull together all the data that would highlight a single path to take. Focus on narrowing the choices by eliminating some that are clearly wrong and make informed strategic, cultural and people assumptions to overcome the common barrier of unclear information.
Then document the most important information you are missing so you know where you stand.
Of all the decision making tips for new managers, presenting viable alternatives and consequences seems to ease the pain and difficulty of choosing the best path.
Remember, there is rarely a “perfect” answer for complex decisions. You need to make the best decisions with the information available and begin to move in the chosen direction.
Just make sure you have a process in place to track progress and adjust as needed.
The Bottom Line
As a new manager, you have a lot invested in you and your team making the best decisions. You want your team to trust your leadership from the get-go. You can certainly ask for and consider their input. In the end, however, the decision is up to you. Follow the field-tested decision making tips for new managers.
To learn more about how to create the environment for good decision making, download 29 Ways to Build and Maintain Trust as a Leader
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