Thursday, April 09, 2009

12 Principles of Process Facilitation: Principle 9 - Decision Making


This is Part 9 of the 12 Principles of Process Facilitation.

The ultimate goal of Facilitation is to produce Synergy. Synergy exists only when everybody agrees and decides to act in the same direction.

Conflicts Resolution encourages agreement and paves the path for consensus. Consented Decision leads to Synergy!

The bigger the group, the less decisive it is!

When more people participates, difference in opinions causes confusion and chaos. At the end, it either turns up to be discussion without decision, or the majority is following the decisions of those who speak loudest or those with greatest authority!

2 mechanisms are needed for effective Consented Decisions - a Discussion Mechanism and a Decision Mechanism.

Any systematic analytical tool can be a good Discussion Mechanism, from a simple Cost & Benefits Analysis, Scenario Analysis, Fish-Bone Analysis to a very complex Weighted Ranking Analysis. These tools allow an orderly and comprehensive input of ideas from all the participants so that everyone is being heard.

An effective Decision Mechanism is something that agreed by all participants. People co-operates better during and after the process when they agree with the process before starting.

Don't mix up the 2 mechanisms. People might not agree with the option which scores highest during the Discussion. Explicit and formalize the decision making process with a Decision Mechanism so that everyone knows it is their own decision!

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