Lighting the Decision Tree


Lighting the Decision Tree

Have you ever worked for or with someone who wanted to know all of the information, be a part of every discussion, and make all of the decisions?  If you haven’t had this sad experience yet, chances are you will someday.  The worst examples are the ones who have been relatively successful in their business careers operating this way. To them, this is the way to ensure success.

This management style only creates a “follower culture” though, and usually leads to a complete lack of succession planning as well as the absence of trust.  There’s no bench.  How many teams have you seen win consistently being only one deep at the key positions?  Probably not too many…

It’s up to us as senior leaders to make sure this doesn’t happen to our organization.  A tool we’ve seen which really works is the Decision Tree.  Basically, it’s a tree diagram in the shape of a pyramid which outlines who makes what decisions at each level.  And you guessed it, most tactical decisions are made by the people who are closest to the action. The fewest, most strategic, are made by the senior executives.

You can sort the decisions any way that makes sense for you and your mission.  Some use operational and financial parameters.  Others use a series of questions where the answers determine who decides.

When you build your Decision Tree, make sure you do so as a team.  Let everyone else have input before you give your views or insights.

Lighting The Decision Tree: Once you get the Decision Tree up, bring it to life.  Light the tree and see what happens.  It’s one of the best gifts you can give your team, and with your personal commitment will endure far beyond your watch.  Enjoy the Holidays, and the journey!