The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Decision Makers

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Decision Makers

Why do strategic decisions go wrong? What are the consequences? What distinguishes the great decision makers from the rest of the pack?

Get the answer to these questions and more from this original and entertaining presentation that discusses the 7 habits of highly effective decision makers. The presentation is being followed up by a series of articles that will give greater detail, more examples and actionable techniques to help you and your organisation “improve lives through better decisions.” Subscribe to this blog (see bottom of page) to ensure you do not miss any of them.

The 7 habits of highly effective decision makers

Note: if you would rather not download the presentation, you can view it at:

Slideshare,  or

YouTube    (accompanied by “Changes” by David Bowie)

If you would like to purchase a narrated version of the slideshow where each page comes with a more detailed commentary, please visit our “Decision Shop”  We are available to make this presentation to members of your organisation where we will elaborate on the presentation with further details and examples. Contact Simon Gifford at to make arrangements .

Gary Klein video: “Streetlights and shadows”

Gary Klein video

The brilliant academic on decision making, Gary Klein, has launched a new book called Streetlights and shadows. Here is a video clip where he discusses some of the content and de-bunks certain myths about decision making and how it actually happens in real life.

He discusses critical decisions under time pressures (using fire-fighters as an example); why you can trust your intuition (using medical examples) and the myth of requiring clear objectives before launching into a decision making process.

The video is an hour long, but is exceptionally easy to watch and full of challenging concepts.

Gary Klein video

Intuition – more than trusting your gut

Intuition – more than trusting your gut.

Here is a link to a useful article written by Modesto Maidique (visiting professor at Harvard Business School) who talks about intuition and knowledge.

The core theme of the article is that intuition may be more than just gut. His examples show great “intutive decisions” often are accompanied by great knowledge of the subject matter as well. Additional examples show spectacular failure when this has been missing.

There is, however, a third ingredient and that is deep introspection as highlighted in the quote below.

 If you are going to understand the biases, emotions, and offsets of your decision-making compass which may effectually trump your domain knowledge and result in poor judgments, you must learn to “observe all men, but yourself most.”

Intuition is not just trusting gut by Modesto Maidique

If you would like to discuss how you could improve the decision making capacity and capability of your own organisation, please contact Simon Gifford at

The way we (used to) do things around here

The way we (used to) do things around here.
Reframing behaviour to make change happen

I recently came across this fascinating Booz & Co. article that discusses the use of neuroscience in making changes happen – at organisational and personal levels. We all have experienced times when we have tried to make personal changes and failed (New Years Resolutions as one example) or tried to make organisational changes and for some reason the changes do not happen or at least do not stick.

This article goes some way to explain why this happens, or does not happen. Although the use of neuroscience in assisting with organisational change is still relatively in its infancy, there are some interesting ideas put forward that can help us think about making organisational change stick.

I am certain that in addition to the above, this also has significant relevance in considering how we manage the behavioural pitfalls that await us when taking decisions. Much work has been done in identifying these challenges (e.g. anchoring and seeking confirmatory evidence), but far less done in what we do about these things. The “meta-thinking” (thinking about what we are thinking about) discussed in the article is one way of doing this.

Below is a link to a summary of the article and a second link to the article itself.

We at Genesis would be happy to have a discussion with you as to how these principals and ideas may be put into practice in your organisation (or your personal life) when taking strategic decisions – or in the implementation of such.

Reframing behaviour – Summary of “the way we (used to) do things” article

Article: The way we (used to) do things around here

Improving the value of decisions through behavioural strategy

Improving decision value through behavioural strategy

Below is a link to a summary on an article written by Dan Lovallo and published in the McKinsey Quarterly earlier this year. The document discusses the impact of biases on strategic decisions and goes so far as to calculate the improved return on investment of a decision if the decision process is improved – a not unsubstantial 6,9 percentage points.

The article also offers some ideas as to how to counteract these biases – albeit a little simplistically and linearly in our humble opinion. But the summary and the article are well worth a read if you wish to improve your own strategic decision-making process.

Improve decision value through behavioural strategy