The Decision Maker by Dennis Bakke

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Dennis Bakke is the NYT bestelling author of The Decision Maker. http://decisionmakerbook.com/ Who makes the important decisions in your organization? Strategy, product development, budgeting, compensation—such key decisions typically are made by company leaders. That’s what bosses are for, right? But maybe the boss isn’t the best person to make the call. Dennis Bakke shows us how giving decisions to the people closest to the action can transform any organization.

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The Decision Maker by Dennis Bakke

  1. 1. Unlock the Potential ofEveryone in Your Organization,One Decision at a TimeDENNIS BAKKE
  2. 2. Hi, I’m Dennis.I enjoy making decisions.
  3. 3. Early on, I wouldsometimes ask othersfor advice, but Iwould make the finaldecision. Isn’t thatwhat leaders aresupposed to do?
  4. 4. I soon realized thatthe more decisionsI made, the lessengaged othersbecame, and the lessownership they hadin the results.The problem was me.
  5. 5. The Problem Bosses are often less informedthan people closer to the action.In most organizations, bosses make all theimportant decisions. In fact, most people would tellyou that’s what leadership is. But are bosses alwaysthe best equipped to make all decisions?
  6. 6. The ProblemThe people closest to the decision know the most, and feel the most ownership. Decision Often, leaders aren’t the closest to a situation—and they’re not the people most affected by a decision. The people closest to the situation are the best informed about the personalities and factors involved. And they have the most at stake.
  7. 7. The Problem People are often treated like machines, not human beings. TO DO: 1) Push button 2) Tell boss if anything goes wrong 3) Wait 4) RepeatLeaders don’t often make use of the perspectivesand expertise of the people who are closest to asituation. Instead, many organizations seek to controlbehavior through top-down leadership that enforcesprocedures and rules. But people aren’t machines.
  8. 8. Result... People don’t get to makemeaningful decisions at work,so they are not fully engaged.
  9. 9. But I believe peopleare capable of makingdecisions. My beliefis grounded in theassumptions I makeabout people...
  10. 10. People Are Unique
  11. 11. People AreCreative Thinkers
  12. 12. People AreCapable of Learning
  13. 13. People AreUp for a Challenge
  14. 14. Distributing thedecisions more broadlyand inviting more peopleto be part of theprocess will lead tomore engaged peopleand better decisions.
  15. 15. It hasn’t beeneasy to trust andempower my peopleto make meaningful Decisiondecisions. As a boss,it’s hard to let go.
  16. 16. And people aren’t perfect. We’re all fallible—including leaders. That’s why I developedThe Decision Maker Process.
  17. 17. The Decision Maker Process.In a decision-maker organization, the leaderleads by choosing a decision-maker.The decision-maker must ask for advice.The advice process brings multiple perspectivestogether to guide a successful outcome.But the decision-maker makes the final call—and takes responsibility for it.
  18. 18. Choosing the Decision-Maker The leader leads by choosing a decision-maker. Proximity. Who’s close to the issue? Are they well acquainted with the context, the day-to-day details, and the big picture?
  19. 19. Choosing the Decision-Maker The leader leads by choosing a decision-maker. Perspective. Proximity matters, but so does perspective. Sometimes an outside perspective can be just as valuable.
  20. 20. Choosing the Decision-Maker The leader leads by choosing a decision-maker. Experience. Has this person had experience making similar decisions? What were the consequences of those decisions?
  21. 21. Choosing the Decision-Maker The leader leads by choosing a decision-maker. Wisdom. What kinds of decisions has this person made in other areas? Were they good ones? Do you have confidence in this person?
  22. 22. The Advice Process In a decision-maker culture, the decision-maker makes the final callbut must ask for advice. Deciding who to get advice from can influence a successful outcome.
  23. 23. The Advice ProcessGet advice from people who have:Experience. Has this person had experience withthis problem? There’s no teacher like experience. Experience
  24. 24. The Advice ProcessGet advice from people who have:Position. People in differentpositions see different things.The decision-maker asksa leader, a peer, someonebelow them in the hierarchy— ?and even, if circumstanceswarrant, experts from outsidethe company.
  25. 25. The Advice ProcessGet advice from people who have:Responsibility. Decisions haveconsequences—and decision-makers should be held accountablefor theirs. At the same time, nobodyis right all the time. The mostimportant part of any decisionis that the decision-maker fullyengages with the advice process,not just that he or she gets it “right.”
  26. 26. The Advice Process Get advice from people who have:Ownership. When people are asked for advice,they start to feel ownership. Ideally, everyonewho offers advice works for the success of theproject as if it were their own.The advice process isn’t justabout getting the right answer.It’s about building a strong Decisionteam and creating a process ofcommunication that will improveall decisions in a company.
  27. 27. Benefits of the Advice Process1. Everyone becomes more engaged.People feel more ownership when theiradvice is sought.2. On-the-job education.No training can match real-timeexperience.3. Better decisions.When decisions involve morepeople who are fully engaged, anorganization has a higher chance ofa good outcome than it does with a !conventional top-down approach.
  28. 28. Accountability After the decision is made, thedecision-maker follows through by communicating and measuring the results of the decision.
  29. 29. I’ve shared my story of the decision maker process in these books...
  30. 30. Now, it’s your turn.
  31. 31. ConnectShare successes and lessons www.decisionmakerbook.com info@decisionmakerbook.com facebook.com/decisionmakerbook Twitter @DecisionBook

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