Any human being constantly makes decisions no matter what is their standing in professional or personal life is. For any professional any decision that they make has a direct bearing on the business results. So, it’s not surprising when you find the top management gurus saying that decision making is the single most important competence that anyone has. There may be a difference in criticality and scope of decisions but all of them play their roles in a business environment. Since most of the decisions that we need to make have to be made in the least possible time it always helps when there is comparison data available. Comparison data can be effectively stored in a knowledge management system.
It is often heard that the most successful professionals have better gut feelings so they make decisions better and faster. However, if you analyze carefully the most successful businesspeople don’t just rely on their gut instincts to make successful decisions. They use instincts but they also use logic and analysis for decision making and this is a fact that most others ignore to see. And for using logic and analysis data mining and data interpretation is critically important. With a knowledge management system all data pertaining to previously taken decisions can be stored. And this data can be extracted at the click of a button so one is able to make better decisions.
One of the most effective tools in decision making is the Kepner-Tregoe Approach. The premise of the Kepner-Tregoe Approach is that the goal of any decision taken should be that the best possible choice is opted for. This means that one doesn’t need to over analyze to make the perfect choice or a choice without any defects. Every decision taken has some risks associated with it and the person making the decision has to accept this fact.
The Kepner-Tregoe Approach runs a person through a series of steps that can be as follows – 1. Setting objectives; 2. Exploring the alternatives and setting up priorities; 3. Exploring the strengths and weaknesses of the alternatives at the top of the priority list and 4. Choosing the best alternative. This form is decision making is considered unbiased and involves mixing data with gut instincts. There is an element of preconceived notions and perceptions but no human being can come out of these even when they have to make the most critical decisions of their life. However, preconceived notions and perceptions can be minimized using a knowledge management system.
Many organizations have their knowledge management system but they use the system for retaining knowledge. Not too many think that this system can be used for storing decisions. And this is precisely what I want to propose. If you have this system you should use it to store all decision data. This will help in making future decisions because one can consider past data available in the system.
Using knowledge management system for decision making is useful and effective. Try out a free tool and you will know how.