Monday, November 30, 2015

3 Common Decision Making Traps Leaders Should Avoid

A businessman stands next to a maze and does not know how to begin walking through

One of the key skills taught in situational leadership training is how to make effective decisions. Sound decision-making is a critical trait of great leaders. No one said the process is easy…there are so many factors to consider and multiple paths to take…and it is not without risk. Be wary of the common traps that drive you in the wrong direction in the challenging maze of decision making.

Here are 3 biases that can steer you wrong:

  1. OverconfidenceIf you have been lucky so far in the choices you’ve made, you may have to fight the bias of overconfidence. It can lead you to decide prematurely. Far better to look at all the data, especially those that contradict your thinking, and to listen thoughtfully to alternatives to your solution.
  2. Over-reliance on first impressionsBeware of weighing first impressions too heavily. You may leap to conclusions that are not accurate. Instead, try to avoid relying too much on the most familiar or the most recent and slow down your thinking process.
  3. Selective filteringIt is only human nature to pay more attention to the information that favors your position than to conflicting data. But, again, this bias can lead you astray. To counteract this tendency, be sure to examine all the information, especially the information that does not align with your opinion.

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