You are watching: Smart choices: a practical guide to making better decisions
Product DetailsJohn S. Hammond is an internationally known decision-making consultant specializing in negotiation and also corporate strategy, and a previous professor at Harvard organization School. Ralph L. Keeney is a study Professor Emeritus in ~ Fuqua institution of business at battle each other University, a member that the nationwide Academy the Engineering, and a popular decision-making consultant. Howard Raiffa, a pioneer in arising decision and negotiating analysis, is professor emeritus at Harvard service School, and the writer of The Art and Science of Negotiation. He has broadly taught decision making come students that business, public policy, law, and medicine.
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Chapter 1 Making clever ChoicesOur decisions shape our lives. Make consciously or unconsciously, with an excellent or poor consequences, they stand for the an essential tool we use in encountering the opportunities, the challenges, and the unpredictabilities of life.• should I go to college? If so, where? To study what? • What career should I pursue? What job should I take? • should I gain married now, or wait? must I have children? If so, when and also how many? • Where must I live? have to I profession up to a bigger house? What can I contribute to my community? • Which job candidate should I hire? What marketing strategies need to I recommend for my company? • since I feel unfulfilled, should I adjust jobs? Go back to school? Move? • just how should ns invest mine savings? When must I retire? To do what? Where?Such questions note the progression of our lives and our careers, and the method we answer castle determines, to a big extent, our location in culture and in the world. Our success in all the roles we play--student, worker, boss, citizen, spouse, parent, individual--turns ~ above the decisions us make.Making decision is a fundamental Life SkillSome Decisions will be fairly obvious--"no-brainers." Your financial institution account is low, but you have actually a two-week holidays coming up and you desire to gain away come someplace heat to relax with your family. Will certainly you expropriate your in-laws" sell of complimentary use of their Florida beachfront condo? Sure. You favor your employer and also feel prepared to move forward in her careers. Will you step in because that your ceo for three weeks while she attends a professional breakthrough course? that course.But the no-brainers room the exceptions. Most of the important decisions you"ll confront in life are tough and also complex, through no straightforward or noticeable solutions. And also they more than likely won"t influence you alone. They"ll influence your family, your friends, her coworkers and also many others known and also unknown. Making an excellent decisions is for this reason one that the many important components of just how well you fulfill your duties and achieve your an individual and expert goals. In short, the capability to make smart selections is a an essential life skill. Many of us, however, dread making hard decisions. By definition, tough selections have high stakes and serious consequences; they involve countless and complex considerations; and also they disclose us come the judgments the others. The need to make a an overwhelming decision puts us at hazard of anxiety, confusion, doubt, error, regret, embarrassment, loss. No wonder we uncover it har to work out down and also choose. In living through a significant decision, we suffer durations of alternating self-doubt and overconfidence, of procrastination, the wheel-spinning and flip-flopping, that frustration, even of desperation. Ours discomfort regularly leads us to do decisions also quickly, or as well slowly, or as well arbitrarily. Us flip a coin, toss a dart, let who else--or time--decide. The result: a trivial choice, dependent on luck because that success. It"s only later on that we realize we can have do a smarter choice. And also by climate it"s as well late. You have the right to Learn to Make far better DecisionsWhy carry out we have such trouble? It"s simple: us don"t know just how to make decisions well. Despite the importance of decision making to our lives, couple of of us ever receive any training in it. For this reason we are left to find out from experience. Yet experience is a costly, inefficient teacher the teaches us negative habits follow me with good ones. Because decision situations vary therefore markedly, the experience of do one important decision regularly seems of little use when dealing with the next. How is deciding what project to take or what house to buy comparable to deciding what institution to send your children to, what medical treatment to pursue for a major illness, or what balance come strike amongst cost, aesthetics, and duty in to plan a brand-new office park?The connection amongst the decisions you make lies not in what you"re deciding, yet in just how you decide. The only method to yes, really raise her odds of do a good decision is to find out to use a great decision-making process--one the gets you come the best solution through a minimal lose of time, energy, money, and composure.An effective decision-making process fulfills these six criteria:• It concentrates on what"s important.
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• it is logical and consistent. • the acknowledges both subjective and also objective factors and blends analytical with intuitive thinking. • the requires just as much info and analysis as is crucial to fix a certain dilemma. • that encourages and also guides the gathering of pertinent information and informed opinion. • it is straightforward, reliable, easy to use, and flexible.A decision-making method that addresses this criteria have the right to be exercised on decisions significant and minor--what movie come see, what car to buy, what holidays to take, what investment to make, what department head to hire, what medical treatment come pursue. And also the more you use such one approach, the more efficient and also effective it will become. Together you grow an ext skilled and also your trust grows, making decisions will certainly become 2nd nature to you. In fact, friend may find your friends and also associates asking you for assist and advice v their difficult choices!Use the PrOACT strategy to make Smart ChoicesThis book provides you through a straightforward, proven method for do decisions. It does no tell girlfriend what to decide, but it does show you how. Our approach meets the 6 criteria provided above. It helps you to check out both the tangible and also the intangible elements of your decision instance more clearly and to interpret all pertinent facts, feelings, opinions, beliefs, and also advice right into the best feasible choice. Highly flexible, the is applicable to business and professional decisions, to an individual decisions, to family decisions--any decision you need to make.One thing the method won"t carry out is make hard decisions easy. That"s impossible. Difficult decisions room hard since they"re complex, and also no one have the right to make that intricacy disappear. However you can manage intricacy sensibly. How? just like you"d climb up a mountain: one step at a time. Our approach takes one action at a time. Us have discovered that also the most facility decision can be analyzed and also resolved by considering a set of eight elements. The first five--Problem, Objective, Alternatives, Consequences, Tradeoffs--constitute the core of our approach and are applicable come virtually any type of decision. The acronym because that these--PrOACT--serves as a reminder the the best approach to decision cases is a proactive one. The worst thing you deserve to do is wait until a decision is required on you--or made for you. The Eight facets of clever ChoicesProblemObjectivesAlternativesConsequencesTradeoffs-----------------------UncertaintyRisk ToleranceLinked DecisionsThe three remaining elements--uncertainty, threat tolerance, and also linked decisions--help clarify decision in volatile or evolving environments. Part decisions won"t involve these elements, however many of your most vital decisions will.The essence of the PrOACT method is to divide and also conquer. To fix a facility decision situation, you rest it right into these elements and also think systematically about each one, focusing on those that are crucial to your certain situation. Climate you reassemble your thoughts and analysis into the clever choice. So, back our an approach may not make a hard decision easy, it will definitely make the easier.