Strategic Decision Making: Maximizing Strategic Effectiveness through Option Solving

Strategies often fall apart due to inadequate decisions along the way. Sometimes those decisions are simple and straightforward and traditional decision making will suffice. But, more often than not, the choices are complex and the stakes are high. For this reason it requires maximum quality decision making: it requires the maximum exploration of options.

This is where Option Solving comes in handy because it taps into our most natural decision making capability (our intuitive mind): whereas traditional problem solving taps more into our rational mind, which is nowhere near as gifted when it comes to making decisions. Our intuitive intelligence is built to handle complex choices. It is made to juggle different variations. It is also constructed to see the forest-before-the-trees. Our rational minds don’t have this same adroitness. All this has developed through the course of our lives: billions of computations and permutations of our life’s experiences.

Like a computer back-up system, it constantly synthesizes and compares with what’s already there and what’s new. When challenged with fresh decisions, it is able to instantly explore its enormous database and find similar experiences and outcomes. Then, of course, there are its biological senses that have been honed and handed down over generations until it is part of our DNA. Until more recently, we have given insufficient attention to its power and importance in decision making.

Consequently, to fully plug into our intuitive mind, when making key strategic decisions, it makes a whole lot of sense. With the option solving technique (see the Book tab) and its question formation, creation of “bookends,” and formulation of viable options, it creates an intelligent “picture” from which our intuitive capability can scan and make an optimum choice.

For strategic purposes, its advantages are:

  • Determines that the right question is asked (fires the possibilities).
  • Invites maximum creative thinking by framing with extreme options (uses “bookends”)
  • Challenges participants to produce at least 5-6 options (explores all the possibilities).
  • Encourages the inclusion of a diverse group of people wherever practicable (accesses the “wisdom of crowds”).
  • Creates a comprehensive picture from which an optimum strategic decision can be made (pictures are an essential food of our intuitive minds).
  • Allows for “peace of mind” in the ultimate decision (because all options were explored).
  • Produces the optimum decision of the moment (owing to the power and wisdom of our intuitive minds).

Please refer to the Latest Example to see a typical strategic use. If you have an example of your own, please share it with this blogger, through the COMMENTS area.  

Thanks Option Solving. (NOTE: Next posting in 2 weeks: “Using Option Solving to ‘Do more with less’.”  Make your COMMENTS or go to peter @ileadershipsolutions.com to connect with the blogger.)

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