When entrepreneurs hire a business consultant they expect to receive advice about how to get started, excel in their industry, or go international. They even expect to learn the best way to develop an online presence for their businesses. What they do not expect is a lesson on self-improvement. However, the most experienced consulting professionals provide this and so much more. As just one example, here are some recommended techniques for smarter decision-making.
Entrepreneurs make business decisions on a daily basis and many of them consider their decisiveness a major asset. Unfortunately, reality is much different from self-perception. The business decision-making process is often subpar due to systemic issues and personal factors. To make decisions that are both smart and effective, business owners must consider several things.
Many entrepreneurs believe that they should be the only ones making decisions regarding their companies. However, the most impressive accomplishments result from teamwork. A group of people focused on quality and continuous improvement can take a business far. Sadly, many people in the upper echelons of a company have trouble asking for assistance when making decisions in areas where they are weak. Instead, they overestimate their skills and abilities and make bad choices. Knowing when to bring in the team is important.
Bias is an aspect of nearly every decision and it is impossible to get rid of it. Merely recognizing that they have inherent inclinations will not free entrepreneurs from these. A system must be put into place that prevents bias from ruling a decision. Experienced consultants can identify predictable mistakes made during planning and decision-making. They isolate these and help clients make decisions that solve the problem or move the business in the desired direction.
A decision involves choosing between at least two options. However, when corporate leaders are faced with important strategic decisions, they usually consider a single option. This reinforces the false belief that the leader is always right. According to one study, a leadership group considered decisions to be six times more effective when two alternatives were considered. Take this advice and decide between two top choices.
A good business consultant knows that small changes can improve the decision-making process for any business. Most decisions are similar to those made in the past so examine the past choices to identify applicable lessons. Consider multiple alternatives, address bias, and encourage the leadership team to discuss important aspects and disagree because these actions result in the best decisions.