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Problem solving and decision-making are important skills for business and life. Simple processes for problem-solving and decision-making1.2. There are processes and techniques to improve decision-making and the quality of decisions.Problem-solving often involves decision-making, and decision-making is especially important for management and leadership. Decision-making is more natural to certain personalities, so these people should focus more on improving the quality of their decisions.Some decisions are a simple matter of whether to make a change or not, such as moving, taking a new job, or buying something, selling something, replacing something, etc.
In any case, factors/options can be weighted and scored appropriately.
The 'pros and cons' method can be used especially for two-option problem-solving and decision-making issues where implications need to be understood and a decision has to be made in a measured objective sense.
Good decision-making requires a mixture of skills: creative development and identification of options, clarity of judgement, firmness of decision, and effective implementation.
For group problem-solving and decision-making, or when a consensus is required, workshops help, within which you can incorporate these tools and process as appropriate.
Use whatever scoring method makes good sense to you for your situation.
The example shows a low score method, but you can score each item up to 10, or 20 or 100, or an 'A/B/C' or three-star scoring method - whatever works best for you.The same methodology can be used to compare a series of several options.For more complex situations, especially which entail many more rows and columns, it's sensible to use a spreadsheet.Using a 'weighted list' scoring method is especially useful in big organizational or business decisions, especially which involve lots of different strategic considerations (as in SWOT and PEST and Porter's Five Forces concept).In such situations you can assess different options according to a single set of criteria (the most important considerations), or you can allocate weighted/scored criteria differently to each option (examples of templates are below).See also the free SWOT analysis template and examples, and PEST analysis template, which help decision-making and problem-solving.SWOT analysis helps assess the strength of a company, a business proposition or idea; PEST analysis helps to assess the potential and suitability of a market.This first simple example below enables the weighting of the pros and cons of buying a new car to replace an old car.The methodology is easily adapted for more complex decisions, such as in business strategy and consideration of more complex factors (notably found within other tools such in SWOT and PEST and Porter's Five Forces).(The actual scores below are examples and are not suggested weightings of how to make such a decision, which must be your own ideas).Decision-making criteria depend on your own personal situations and preferences.Criteria and weighting will change according to time, situation, etc.