Sunday, 10 February 2008

The End of Decision-Making - The Start of Judgment ?

Anyone involved with Leadership & Management training will probably view 'Decision-making' as a key cabability/competency to be developed.

Consequently, I'd like to suggest that the latest scholarship from Noel Tichy & Warren Bennis should be essential reading for L&D Consultants (and our HR colleagues).

Judgement - How Winning Leaders Make Great Calls provides a wealth of ideas & information.

"With good judgment, little else matters. Without it, nothing else matters"

So how do they define Judgment ?

"It is a contextually informed decision-making process encompassing three domains: people, strategy and crisis. Within each domain, leadership judgments follow a three-phased process: preparation, the call, and execution. Good leadership judgment is supported by contextual knowledge of one's self, social network, organisation and stakeholders."

This succinctly captures the rich framework provided by the book.

The framework is brought to life by reference to stories from the authors work with world-class leaders and organization. As to be expected from Tichy, GE provides many of these insights.

A bonus is provided in the form of a 'Handbook for Leadership Judgment' (co-written by Chris DeRose & Noel Tichy). This provides a comprehensive diagnostic & self-help guide for leaders willing to take the next step in their personal learning of this subject.

If working through this self-directed learning proves too much of a challenge for the reader - I hope readers don't miss the table on page 292 that compares 'Decision-Making' (a single-moment, analytic, top down process) with 'Judgment' (a dynamic unfolding process, balancing rational & emotional influences, where execution influences how judgments are reshaped).

... and maybe in a few years time the lasting legacy of this work will be the replacing of 'Decision-Making' with 'Judgment' in lists of Leadership Capabilities !

[NB: to see further reviews of this book, you may find it helpful go to the US Amazon site]