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Avoid Bad Decisions in your Business


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According to a recent Gartner survey, business decisions are becoming increasingly complex and involve more stakeholders or choices than ever before. Therefore, businesses must develop an effective process to make better decisions, and traditional approaches are ineffective for complex choices requiring thorough data handling and scenario comparisons.

While it doesn’t mean that every single decision process needs to be reengineered, it’s essential to ensure that the decision-making path remains connected, contextual and continuous.

  • Connected: Sharing information, insights, and data is essential at every business level.
  • Contextual: There is no such thing as one standard decision that can meet the needs of individual businesses.
  • Continuous: Being able to respond quickly to opportunities and disruptions is vital to survival; therefore, the decision-making process is in tune with the market environment.

Avoiding potentially harmful decisions involves focusing on solutions that maintain the process connected, contextual, and continuous.

Keep it connected

The traditional business model where high hierarchy roles have access to information and everyone else is kept in the dark has been proven ineffective. Indeed, lack of transparency when it comes to team communication affect trust but also access to unique data and insights. For instance, customer-facing employees have a better understanding of customer needs and issues. However, when the communication process doesn’t promote clear and open exchange, their knowledge is never shared with the rest of the business.

Transparent communication promotes the creation of a core business knowledge that is accessible to all. By encouraging transparent communication, companies ensure everyone in the team can have a say and can ask questions, regardless of roles and hierarchy. As a result, there is no obstacle to the passage of information.

Companies capture a ton of data every single day. Yet, making the best use of the data requires the creation of a data reporting strategy. Essentially, a reporting strategy acts as a value-generating process that gives insights into different operations and results. Reporting can occur as charts, graphs, or any other visualization dashboard to provide an overview of the business performance. Reporting can highlight the relevant KPIs or focus on business growth, for example. Providing regular data reports ensures everyone in the business is informed about the current activities and results. While a report doesn’t provide an in-depth analytical explanation, it is sufficient as a preparatory step before making a decision. Anomalies can then be enquired about if necessary.

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Keep it contextual

Every business has unique operations and processes. Therefore, even if a competitor in the same industry sector builds a successful performance through a specific strategy, there is no guarantee that the same strategy would be effective in another business. That is why it’s essential to consider each decision in its unique context. If you are not familiar with digital twins companies, it is a unique process that supports decision-making by creating life-like virtual representations of the company. Think of digital twins as an experimental area where you can test opportunities and decisions virtually. Therefore, the business can observe the consequences of future choices before making them. It is a fantastic option for complex decisions, as data engineers create sophisticated models that imitate real-life conditions. Will the team support a new opportunity? Are customers ready for a change of direction? This scientific data-focused AR model lets you find out the answers to tricky questions without putting the business at risk.

Every company needs to develop its unique expertise to remain relevant in the market. But what does company expertise involve? Essentially, expertise is the combination of theoric and practice knowledge through:

  • Prolonged experience in the same sector
  • Regular training and courses to keep knowledge up-to-date
  • Real-life applications of new knowledge within the business

In other words, decisions need to be attached to a context to become meaningful. Business experts are responsible for providing the context for the business direction. It’s worth bringing more than one expert together to ensure that the decision-making process doesn’t fall into the trap of focusing on one specific element. Ideally, each company should have at least one expert per service, including administrative and financial services.

Keep it continuous

Nothing remains static. Even though businesses invest a lot of resources and money in building data-based decision processes, they can still get things wrong. Why are data-informed decisions incorrect? Unfortunately, this has a lot to do with the pace at which data can change. Data can become inaccurate or obsolete rapidly if the business doesn’t establish a process to keep it updated. That’s precisely why change data capture can be a game-changer in the decision-making journey. Change data capture uses a log-based approach to sync databases and spot updates into the original database. Using this method can save time and ensure the business constantly uses the most relevant data for decisions. Change data capture has proven especially useful for real-time analysis, especially in a rapidly changing environment. This ensures that the business is always working with the latest and most accurate data, and can adjust to fluctuations seamlessly.

Market analysis is one of the most reliable approaches to identifying future threats and opportunities. Unfortunately, the process can take time. While market analysis is important, more often than not, the business can’t afford to dedicate weeks or months to analyzing the political, economic, social, and technological environment. Instead, it can be a lot more effective to keep track of the trends. Market trends act as indicators of the social-economical situation. Trends can be short- or long-lived. But if they are going to be profitable, they are going to leave a digital footprint. Indeed, social media monitoring offers a unique trend observation position. Popular hashtags reveal a lot about the current market mindset and needs. While this doesn’t replace a thorough analysis, social media monitoring can fuel the decision-making process with the evolutions and fluctuations of the social background.

It goes without saying: It is never easy to make the right decision in the business world. Data-informed decisions can prevent unnecessary emotional bias. But even data often fail to tell the whole story. Therefore, using data in a connected, contextual, and continuous way can considerably transform the decision process and the decision result.

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