In Chapter 6 of Traction, Gino Wickman shares ten “commandments” of a team that’s great at solving issues. Because solving an issue often requires one or more decisions to be made, they are also referred to as the Ten Commandments of Good Decision Making in the eBook, Decide! If you or your team are stuck and making little or no progress when solving issues, it’s time to assess whether you’re following these commandments.
We’ll cover the first five today. Check back in a few days for Part 2 and the remaining five commandments.
The Ten Commandments of Good Decision Making (Part 1)
1. Thou Shalt Not Rule by Consensus
On a healthy team, where the vision is clear and everyone is on the same page, eight out of ten times, everyone will agree with the solution to a problem. However, sometimes they won’t, and someone needs to make the final decision. That someone is the leader.
Consensus management doesn’t work, period. Eventually, group consensus decisions will put you out of business. When the leader makes the final decision in these situations, not everyone will be pleased, but as long as their voices have been heard and if the team is healthy, they can usually live with it and support the decision. From there, you must always present a united front moving forward.
2. Thou Shalt Not Be a Weenie
The solution is often simple; it’s just not always easy to implement. You must have a strong will, firm resolve, and the willingness to make the tough decision.
3. Thou Shalt Be Decisive
In the classic book Think and Grow Rich, Napoleon Hill cited a study that analyzed 25,000 people who had experienced failure. Lack of decision, or procrastination, was one of the major causes. In contrast, analysis of several hundred millionaires revealed that every one of them had the habit of reaching decisions promptly and changing them slowly. It’s less important what you decide than it is that you decide … so, decide!
4. Thou Shalt Not Rely on Secondhand Information
You can’t solve an issue involving multiple people without all the parties present. If the issue at hand involves more than the people in the room, schedule a time when everyone can attend. One client calls these “pow-wows.” When someone brings him an issue involving others or secondhand information, he says, “Time for a pow-wow” and pulls everyone involved together and solves it.
5. Thou Shalt Fight for the Greater Good
Put your egos, titles, emotions, and past beliefs aside. Focus on the vision for your organization. You’ll cut through the candy-coating, personalities, and politics. If you stay focused on the greater good, it will lead you to better and faster decisions.