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Pros and Cons: How to Make the Right Decisions

Each of us makes decisions every day. What issues should be addressed first? What to devote more time today to internal meetings or external meetings. Much less often do we have to make strategically important decisions. Diversify a company? Dismiss or leave an employee? Cooperate with a particular company? How to make the “right” decision so as not to make a mistake? In order not to regret and not worry about the mistake made?

Surely, each of you has your own methods. Someone trusts intuition, someone collects facts and arranges everything on the shelves. There is always no universal method suitable for everyone. And, I think, it is unlikely to ever appear.
I want to offer my own method, which helps me make an informed decision, on which much depends. As it turned out recently, Yitzhak Adizes also promotes him and suggests that he use this particular method in making change management courses to make the right decision.

So. Surely you have all heard about the Pros and Cons method. It proposes to divide a sheet of paper into two parts. On the right side write all the pros, on the left – all the minuses of the decision.

Everything is logical. I myself made such decisions a couple of times. She wrote pros and cons. I saw that somehow the advantages are not so big. And refused changes. That is, left everything as it is, because according to the list, it turned out that there are not so many pluses … Well, or the minuses were scary.

Often, I later regretted that I decided not to change anything, because the situation was getting complicated and there were more problems.

So I brought out for myself a sophisticated method of “Pros and Cons”. Take two sheets of paper. Divide both into two parts and put on each “+” and “-” in each part.

On the first sheet, write the pros and cons if you make this decision. On the second – all the pros and cons, if you do NOT make decisions.

And here miracles begin. The disadvantages of not making a decision can turn out to be so serious strategically that you will understand what is fraught with the rejection of changes.

Try it, do an experiment. Take the question that torments you for a long time, which you cannot deal with for more than a week. Surely you have already compiled a list of pluses and minuses, if you make a decision. But so far you haven’t done anything, you haven’t changed anything. Take the second sheet of paper and write on it the pros and cons of the fact that you do not make a decision. Now look how much your picture of the world has changed?

Let’s look at an example. For example, a company has an employee who does his job. Four, without any special feats. Every day comes on time, does not make big mistakes. In general, there is nothing to complain about. Only then does he walk with a constantly displeased look. Colleagues constantly complain that everything is wrong in the company and everything is wrong. That the company will soon go bankrupt … Or layoffs are coming – a crisis in the country. In general, this employee undermines the morale of the team.

We make lists of the pros and cons of the “Dismiss employee”:

there will be an opportunity to get a motivated employee.
will have to look for a new employee;
a new employee will have to be trained;
two or three months will pass before the new employee begins to produce results;
I will look cruel and ruthless – the employee has family, children. In addition, it works fine;
will have to pay severance pay.
Based on this logic of reflection, it is more correct to leave the employee. Now let’s make a list of the pros and cons of “Don’t fire an employee”:

the work will be carried out predictably, no additional time is required for the search, training of a new employee.
the employee will continue to undermine the morale of the team;
the negative multiplies at an amazing rate. The loyalty of the remaining employees will decrease very quickly;
motivation of colleagues will decrease, because they see that you can work without really straining for a four, and get the same money;
gradually the department of this employee will begin to turn into a swamp, and the remaining departments will catch up with him.
By looking at both sheets, you will see wider prospects, more serious consequences in the long run and you can make the right decision about the dismissal of such individuals.

The advanced method of “Pros and Cons” will allow you to expand your horizons, see a strategic perspective and help you make better decisions.

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