|Enhance Your Decision-Making Skills: 3 Tips|
Good decision making
requires a sense of prediction—how different choices change the likelihood of
different outcomes—and a sense of judgment—how desirable each of those outcomes
is—according to a Harvard Business Review
article by Walter Frick.
Highlighted below are
three ways to improve your ability to predict the effects of your choices and
assess their desirability.
1. Avoid overconfidence. Consider the fact that you may be more
confident about each step of your decision-making process than you ought to be,
and that’s OK. If you embrace being less certain, however you may be more
likely to revisit the logic of your decision and prepare for dramatically
different outcomes than your expected one.
2. Analyze how frequently predicted outcomes occur. Numerous studies demonstrate
that the best starting point for predictions is to ask “How often does that
typically happen?” Get away from the specifics of your particular decision or
individual case, and look at the base rate and outcomes of similar cases first.
3. Learn about probability. Research suggests basic training in
probability makes people more effective forecasters and helps them avoid
certain cognitive biases. Brushing up on probability theory may help you better
express uncertainty and think numerically about the question “How often does
this usually happen?”
“Great decision makers
don’t follow these rules only when facing a particularly difficult choice; they
return to them all the time,” Frick writes. “They recognize that even seemingly
easy decisions can be hard—and that they probably know less than they think.”
—Adapted from “3 Ways to Improve Your Decision Making,” by Walter Frick, Harvard Business Review, Jan. 22, 2018.