Project Management

Nailing the Decision-Making Process: A Project Manager’s Guide

Temitope (Temi) Dabo, is a Project Management Professional (PMP)® certification holder working in a global medical devices company. She holds a master’s degree in project management from Northeastern University in the Unites States, and a master’s degree in electrical and electronics engineering from the University of Leeds in the United Kingdom. Before joining the medical devices industry, Ms. Dabo managed several projects across a range of sectors including financial services, healthcare, and nonprofits. Over four years, she has worked with over 100 project teams in seven countries.

Regardless of how small or large a project is, decisions must be made at least once during the project life cycle. As the organizational need for quick and strong decisions increases, today’s challenges are due to significant delays in getting stakeholder buy-in on critical decisions. The downsides of such delays are increased timelines, costs, and risks. Most importantly, team members become frustrated as key decision makers begin pushing back on committing to a decision. Thus, this article will focus on techniques that can help project managers to drive strong and quick decisions, and the impact of limited rationality on such decisions.

For any decisions to be made, there is a need to choose from alternatives, which is where most individuals struggle today, and this is not just limited to the project management field. In our daily lives, we have choices that require decisions. Such decisions could be as simple as picking a lunch meal or a TV channel when you have three favorite shows playing at the same time. For instance, when selecting a lunch meal, some people are torn between picking a salad or a burger. Society believes that a salad is a healthier choice than a burger, and some days you could either go for a healthier option or not. As we begin to contemplate what to eat for lunch, five to 10 minutes of our day is wasted due to delays in …

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