When making choices, you can’t please everyone – a daily reality that every business owner faces daily. How do you make decisions that are best for your company without alienating anyone or group?
This article discusses how the decision matrix technique can help with this dilemma by giving you a system to simplify tough choices and ensure that all stakeholders are satisfied.
It is not easy to make choices that affect your organization, bottom-top, and therefore this is a skill that organizations often use to make things easier. An organization can use the decision matrix technique to make hard decisions.
Decision matrices provide you with options and pros and cons for each choice.
First, it is crucial to understand the different types of decisions in an organization, so it’s easier to see where a decision matrix may be beneficial.
There are three main categories for this to make sense:
- Strategic decisions: these are big-picture choices that will affect the overall direction of your company. These include what products to produce, how to market and sell them, and what areas of research and development to invest in.
- Tactical decisions: these are smaller choices that you need to make to assign and delegate the tasks required to carry out the strategic objectives and complete these projects or assignments.
- Operational decisions: this is how your organization functions daily, from deciding what time people start work in the morning to hiring new employees.
You will see that these different types of decisions roll out much more efficiently with a decision matrix.
What is the decision matrix technique?
The concept is quite simple. A decision matrix is a table that maps out all possible options for a given scenario then assigns scores to each option according to specific criteria. This allows you to easily compare and contrast different choices to find the best one.
First, you need to decide on the criteria by which you will evaluate each of these different decisions. The most common way you can do this is by considering four main factors, scale, timing, resources, and risks.
For example, time would play into that factor if it’s a tactical decision, while the scale would be the most crucial factor for strategic decisions.
Resources may include money, time, or materials, while risks might involve damage to your reputation or legal consequences if you get sued. You should consider the duration required to implement each choice before making a final decision.
This understanding can help clarify which option is best for you in this scenario because sometimes, the option with the least risk also has the most extended timeline.
This also implies that you should regularly revisit your decision matrix to ensure that the factors are still relevant and accurate.
This technique takes the emotion out of the equation and often clouds our judgment when making a tough choice. So if you’re feeling inundated by all the options before you, give yourself a breather and try using a decision matrix to help make things a little transparent.
The decision matrix is one of the most popular and versatile problem-solving tools available. It can be used in both business and personal settings, making it an excellent option for any difficult choice you need to make. It’s pretty simple to understand and incorporate into your organization’s daily routine.
One of the things that makes this such a great tool is that once we break down our problem into its parts, we start to see things more clearly and often find ways through them faster than if we had taken the same approach without the matrix.
The decision matrix is a great tool to use because it can help you or your organization make hard choices, which are often difficult decisions that require an evaluation of several factors before concluding.
This method works by breaking down all possible answers into two categories based on how they measure up against every factor involved in making the required choice. We can better understand the hurdles facing our organization, making it easier to decide on a course of action.
The decision matrix is not easy to use because you need to name all your different factors involved in making a choice and then correctly evaluate them within both categories before coming up with a system that will work for you.
This process can be complex because it is often hard to see all the different factors that are at play in a decision, but with practice, this will become easier.
Once you have created your decision matrix, the next step is to use it. Using a decision matrix is to help make better decisions by taking all the inputs from all collaborating teams and evaluating them. This way, each team can know where their information fits in the overall picture and better understand the decision being made by your organization.
This matrix often helps to create a structure that will allow for more efficient decisions, but it also allows you to see all different points of view from teams within your company to help you make a much more informed choice.
Once you have your decision matrix, the next step is to use it. Using a decision matrix is to help make better decisions by taking all the inputs from all collaborating teams and evaluating them.
This way, each team can know where their input fits in the overall picture and better understand the decision-making process. It is imperative to have this engagement to get buy-in for the final decision. This process is not always easy, but it can be gratifying in the end when you have a better product with more input from all teams.
The next step will be to set up your team to prepare for this process and know how it works. You should never come up with the answer and tell them this is the way it will be, and this behavior will only breed resentment and a lack of trust. It would be best to get their input, consider it, and then come up with a decision that you can all stand behind.
The decision matrix technique is not always easy, but it can help your organization make better decisions for multiple reasons.
One of those reasons is that everyone will feel as if they contributed to the decision and it was not just one person’s idea. This way, there is no resistance because each member feels like their ideas were heard and taken into consideration.
Another reason this technique can be helpful is because you have a clean solution with input from all stakeholders in the process.
The steps in using the decision matrix technique are:
- Define the problem or opportunity
- List potential solutions
- Assign a weight to each solution
- Evaluate each solution against the criteria
- Summarize the results
By following these steps, you can come up with a clear decision that everyone will comprehend and follow as per need.
The decision matrix technique is a great way to make choices when you have a lot of stakeholders who all want their voices heard. It can also help make sure that you look at all the potential solutions to a problem, not just the easily visible ones.
Using this technique, you can develop a clear intent and direction that everyone can follow.
There are many different ways to use the decision matrix technique, but you can consider four factors: scale, timing, resources, and risks.
For example, if it’s a tactical decision, time would play into that factor while ensuring it is not a significant decision. Many factors make this technique work, but it can help make those hard decisions easier for the entire organization.
When you’re looking at solving a problem or trying to find a solution, there will often be several ways to reach a solution, and sometimes that would imply the need to make a choice. It isn’t easy for everyone in an organization to do that, but some people can take it on, so managers often use this technique when making choices with significant impacts.
This matrix has four different quadrants, which will give you the main points of what needs consideration when looking at your decision: Cost, Benefit, Risk, Urgency.
The first thing you’ll want to do is identify what quadrant your decision falls into. After that, start listing out the pros and cons of each option in each category. Once you have all that information together, choosing what will benefit the company most effectively becomes easier.
You can use this technique when making choices in your personal life too. Let’s say you’re trying to decide whether or not you should buy a new car? You’re going back and forth between the four different quadrants of cost, benefit, risk, and urgency so that you can ensure that the choice you make will be the most efficient.