Making "good, fast, frequent decisions... better than those with whom you compete," say J. Edward Russo and Paul J.H. Schoemaker, is a critical skill in today's business climate. They additionally believe it's a skill that all of us can learn, much like a proper golf swing. In Winning Decisions
, they lay out a four-step process that constitutes "a broad, conceptual framework" applicable in virtually any situation where a decision is needed. Russo and Schoemaker, consultants and professors who collaborated on an earlier book about the roadblocks to proper decision making, turn their attention here to making decisions "with the head, not the gut." Their program is divided into four phases fully explained in their own sections: Framing, Gathering Intelligence, Coming to Conclusions, and Learning from Experience. In total, they reveal a disciplined system that will benefit anyone looking to make better decisions in just about any situation. --Howard Rothman
From Publishers Weekly
The coauthors of 1989's Decision Traps offer a clear, straightforward explanation of how managers should perform one of their most basic tasks: making a decision. Russo, professor of marketing and behavior science at Cornell, and Shoemaker, research director of Wharton's Mack Center for Technology and Innovation, break their method into four steps: framing decisions, i.e., factoring in difficulties like information overload and the "galloping rate of change," and thereby determining which choices need to be addressed and which ones don't; gathering real intelligence, not just information that will support internal biases; coming to conclusions, i.e., assessing how one's company acts on the intelligence gathered; and learning from experience. The authors walk readers through each of the steps. Unlike many business books, this one is akin to a workbook, providing how-tos, case studies and worksheets so readers can put their ideas into play immediately. The authors highlight key concepts, and they even show an occasional humorous side. However, they stress that even improving the way one goes about making decisions won't guarantee that they'll be the right ones. Decisions still have to be executed successfully, and luck is always a factor. Still, with better decision-making skills, the odds are bound to go up. This book will prove valuable to managers at all levels of an organization. (On-sale: Dec. 26)
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