4. Is there a difference between wrong decisions and bad decisions? Why do good managers sometimes make wrong decisions? Bad decisions? How can managers improve their decision-making skills?
- A wrong decision is your best guess when you have no way of knowing. (Door No. 1 vs. Door No. 2, for example.)
- A bad decision is the wrong call with the facts staring you in the face. (Launching a space shuttle, for instance, when engineers have warned you of nearly certain failure.)
Bad decisions are unforced errors. That distinction matters because you can’t necessarily control outcomes, but you can control process, which helps you avoid bad outcomes.
A good manager can make a decision relying on past experience, which may not fit the current situation. Some do it for self-interest which is dangerous as it operates at a sub-conscious level. Pre-judgements can turn out to be wrong too. In cases of companies, attachments to people, places or things can make a manager decide to sell off the business if the company is engaged in a downsizing process.
Managers, regardless of their age or experience, can always get better at making decisions. Different managers will have different ways to improve. Some managers need to improve the logistics of the decision-making process, meaning they need to learn more information about the business so that their decisions are the right ones. Other managers may have trouble committing to a course of action. This can allow the hesitation to get the better of them. These managers need to learn how to choose the best course and stick to their guns.