Why do you need a decision facilitator?

The number of decisions made in organizations each day, week, and month is huge and unceasing; how to mitigate risks, how to get ahead of industry trends, how to deal with competitive threats, how to attract and retain top talent, planning for projects and conferences, and much more (1). Discussing these decisions too often leads to an unproductive cycle of weighing options over and over again, and never actually deciding (2).

In order to end this discussion loop, the right person needs to guide the participants and ensure that a highly effective and efficient decision process is utilized. Despite what people often think, this person does not need to know the “right answer” to the decision – they just need to be able to ask the right questions to lead to the best answer (2). Given that our brains are not naturally wired to make high-quality, rational decisions, an organization’s collective intelligence and resources need to be properly channeled. Having a highly skilled and trained facilitator to navigate and guide the decision process can ensure that you make the best quality decision – the first time, and every time (1).

What makes a skilled facilitator?

    Whether your facilitator is an internal or external resource, large or small firm, or an independent facilitator, these are the skills necessary to be a successful decision facilitator:

  • The ability to quickly assess a decision situation and to then design and implement an appropriate process to navigate that decision
  • The knowledge of how to break free from the restrictive typical discussions and instead engage in divergent, creative thinking (3)
  • Awareness of the individual and group biases that can impact decision-making, and the mitigation strategies necessary to combat them
  • Ability to strengthen and encourage the skills, awareness, and confidence of the participants and the group as a whole (3)
  • Ability to encourage full participation, promote mutual understanding, and cultivate a shared responsibility for the decisions made (3)
  • Knowledge of how to keep discussions on track and bring them to a close when necessary
  • Ability to accept and effectively deal with the uncertainty inherent in every decision (1)
  • Ability to integrate knowledge and identify opportunities for continuous improvement in their own aptitudes and in the organization’s decision processes
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Not only should a facilitator have these key skills, but a tool should be in place to exercise these skills to their fullest potential.

Powernoodle is the Decision Intelligence Platform that enables facilitators to lead participants toward a quality decision by:

  • Having best practices built in to mitigate biases and enable a fair, candid discussion
  • Enabling diverse groups of stakeholders to easily participate in the decision process, regardless of geography or time zones (Read how diversity can impact your decision-making)
  • Allowing people to think and contribute to discussions at the best times according to their chronotypes rather than in lengthy or untimely meetings
  • Keeping a decision record that includes the discussions and assessments ignited during the decision process

Having a skilled facilitator and a powerful tool to empower the decision-making process will ensure that your organization is able to make meaningful, high-quality decisions every time. Quality decisions are at the root of organizational success; don’t let yourself get out-decided by the competition today. Find out how Powernoodle can help you.

References:

(1) Debacker, D. (2018). Facilitated decisions (and the war for talent) [Blog post].  https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/facilitated-decisions-war-talent-dave-debacker-mba-bsc-cep/

(2) Camarote, R. (2017). Be an office hero by acting as the decision facilitator. Inc. https://www.inc.com/robin-camarote/be-an-office-hero-by-acting-as-the-decision-facilitator.html

(3) Kaner, S. (2007). Facilitator’s guide to participatory decision-making (2nd ed.). San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.