Tuesday, December 13, 2016

The Hybrid Decision-Making Style

The hybrid decision-making style is practical because we live in such a hybrid, networked, extended modern digital working environment.

The digital leaders and professionals spend the significant amount of time in making decisions. However, ineffective decision-making becomes one of the biggest root causes to fail businesses due to "VUCA" characteristics of the digital normality. The poor decision-making can cause the business dysfunction, employee disengagement, or customer dissatisfaction; the short time loss or the long term pain in the organization. The point is that there is no one size fits all formula for all decision making, there are all sorts of decision-making styles depend on the decision maker's cognitive ability, knowledge, insight, or personality. With the increasing pace of change and overwhelming information, can the hybrid style help to improve decision-making maturity?

Leverage the hybrid thought processes in decision-making: It is always crucial to leverage critical thinking in decision analysis, the sense of urgency, the impact of decision, scope, who is being impacted, how likely the situation is likely to change or better information will become known, etc. Critical Thinking brings insight into different situations. It is contextual, it involves both induction and deduction continuum. The real Critical Thinking is an important skill to deal with the multi-logical situation or today’s digital dynamic, which are complex with many moving parts, require multiple disciplines, or have multiple valid viewpoints. But in order to make great decisions and solving problems in the better way, Creative Thinking is also critical, to connect the nonlinear dots, clarify the vision and perceive the new possibilities, in order to make the right decisions for testing the uncharted water or stepping into the unknown digital territories. Critical Thinking narrows, and Creative Thinking expands. In fact, they are interwoven thought processes for enabling  decision-making maturity. Critical thinking evolves deep thinking process usually with creative thinking embedded. Creativity is the one which deals with any sort of idea necessary to solve a situation which definitely requires a critical analysis skill, so to an extent, both of them share a kind of symbiotic relationship for making sound judgment and effective decisions. Besides critical thinking and creative thinking, there are more valuable thought processes such as Systems Thinking, holistic thinking, lateral thinking, etc, play the crucial role in making effective decisions.

Information –Intuition – Decision making: Information allows you to build an actionable insight on how to move from one level to the other. It applies to the context and environment in which decisions are made. However, information has its own limitation (quality, availability, accuracy., etc.), to make good decisions in face of today’s uncertainty and ambiguity of the digital new normal, intuition is also important. Intuition or being intuitive is when you have a gut feeling about something. It is when there isn’t an exact answer to the puzzle because you don’t have all the pieces. Chaos needs to be navigated by intuition. An intuitive mind has the strength and the willpower to follow the courageous heart, if with the right information, have the better chance to make effective decisions. In the human context, information + intuition drives awareness, which can include all of these characteristics, uncertainty, surprise, difficulty and entropy, although they can also trigger a sense of confidence, confirmation, validation, verification, with the goal to improve decision-making maturity.

The hybrid of independent decision making and collective decision-making: Digital businesses are hyperconnected and over-complex, with overloading information and unprecedented uncertainty, and continually evolving in the digital dynamic ecosystem. Hence, it’s much more difficult to make effective decisions with the traditional top-down, one-way management style. Decision agility based on the hybrid of individual decision-making and collective decision-making is dependent on better access to right information, at the right time, but also access to right people. Using the traditional ways of working in the silos and through the rigid processes simply won't have enough time to produce the input for the decision makers. More often than not, you need to allow a 'bottom up' approach to collect sufficient information and leverage collective wisdom. And then you can proceed to environmental, organizational and sociological factors that define the environment in which the decisions are made. Digital is the age of people. In complex operations and organizations with unprecedented uncertainty, business managers also have to live with the consequences of making the wrong decisions faster! Taking the hybrid style to making leadership team's thinking visible by using a more democratic process for decision making will dramatically reduce or eliminate the gaps. Group dynamics leads to final results and performance, especially if the involvement of the activity is related to group inputs and processing. And without proper information or collective input, no good decisions can be made.

The hybrid decision-making style is practical because we live in such a hybrid, networked, extended modern digital working environment. The digital computing technology enables the more seamless virtual platform, enhance the physical organizational structure, empower workforce sharing the thoughts and ideas, engage customers and partners to voice the concerns and feedback, and encourage the broader conversation and interaction within its business ecosystem and social circles in order to decide democratically and collaborate seamlessly.


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