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Decision-Making: Developing a Framework

decision making

These days I feel decision-making is more important than ever before. In leadership, new decisions have to be made on the basic aspects of our business, which prior to COVID, were already done. Now we are back to making decisions on facility hours, how many staff hours we need, or rather, can afford. Also, there are decisions such as class times, the number of classes, which types of classes, and when and if we should add them. Each of these decisions has to be done carefully and strategically due to the tremendous impact they could have on the success of our business.

Gallup, a national research and polling organization, states “decision-making is at the core of organizational effectiveness.” Listed below are Gallup’s 12 Essential Steps you can take to develop a decision-making framework to help achieve the best outcomes.

Laying the Foundation

  1. Understand the purpose and nature of the required decision(s).

2. Use relevant and available data and inputs.
Get all the facts. Opinions matter so listen to them.

3. Involve the right people at the right times.

Development of the Decision Itself

4. Establish and adhere to pertinent decision-making procedures.

5. Clarify roles and responsibilities of all decision-making participants.

6. Foster an environment that encourages participants to share opinions and embrace healthy debate. 
This step I believe needs to be part of your culture already. A fun technique I learned to help get people talking is to have the leader leave the room for the discussion. When the group is ready, the leader can return and a team member can provide the group’s feedback.

7. Ensure decision(s) made aligns with organizational purpose, culture and values.
Stay the course and be true to who you are.

8. Develop a plan of action.

9. Forecast the likely impact of the decision(s) and plan for contingencies.
What could possibly go wrong?

Realization of the Outcome

10. Communicate the decision(s) to the right audiences.
Spread the word on the decision and make sure those who need to know first, do.

11. Ensure follow-through.
Trust it’s getting done, but verify it is.  

12. Apply lessons learned to future decisions.




Karen M. Raisch-Siegel

Karen M. Raisch-Siegel is the executive director of LifeWorks of Southwest General, a health and fitness facility owned and operated by Southwest General Hospital. Karen has been the executive director for over 15 years and is responsible for full operations of the health and wellness center. Karen holds a master’s of science degree in exercise physiology and a bachelor’s of science degree in advertising and business administration. She is a member of the REX roundtables for executives, currently serves on the Middleburg Heights Chamber of Commerce board, the Olmsted Chamber of Commerce board and Valley Riding Inc. board of directors, and is a certified group exercise instructor who actively continues to teach.

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