Are You a Decision Maker or a Decision Hater?

It’s decision time!

With a Federal Election date now set and campaigning well underway, we are regularly reminded that we’re about to make a decision as to who will lead our nation for the next four years.


How do you make decisions?

What do you do with this invitation to decide?  Is it an opportunity or a risk?  Do you make a project of it or forget about it until the last minute?  Do you research many sources, making a full analysis or simply go with your gut?  Do you focus on the short-term election promises and what they mean to you and yours personally, or do you think about the global effects and what these promises might mean for future generations?


The burden of unmade decisions

The fictional character, Luke Rhinehart, in The Dice Man (1971) novel was so disillusioned with life that he abdicated all decision-making responsibility to the roll of a die, no matter what.  While most of us would want to judge this way of living with disapproval, it’s not hard to spot the unmade decisions in our own lives and businesses when we clean out the cupboards, bottom drawer, car, wallet, garage, pantry or wherever the accumulation of clutter occurs.


Unmade decisions create clutter

They take up space and energy, even when the thoughts and emotions associated with them have been relegated to the unconscious part of your mind. Whether the clutter is physical, emotional or even relationship-based, due to the un-had conversations you’ve been postponing, it is all exerting a weight on your well-being. The weight of unmade decisions can affect you physically, emotionally and financially. You can miss great opportunities. Unmade decisions make us tired and out-of-sorts. They impose on our capacity to be fully present.


Decision styles predict performance

You may be surprised to know that your responses to those questions about the election and your actual behaviours – when it comes to making any decision – may, in fact, have more to do with personality than with politics or other circumstances.


The mark we put on our ballot papers is influenced by our values, as well as our political and social views, and how much we are influenced by what we see and hear in the media.  But the way in which a person brings all these factors together, makes meaning of them and actually makes important decisions depend on three key decision approaches, which are personality-based:


  1. Do you tend to avoid threats or seek rewards?
  2. Do you think more strategically (big picture/long-term/complex) or tactically (present context, short-term issues, crisis management etc.)
  3. Do you decide on the basis of data or intuition?


The eight possible combinations of these factors, show your decision-making style and we are now able to measure your individual profile, using the recently released Judgement Report – researched, designed and published by Hogan*.


Working with, and assisting in the selection of senior leaders, I know that decision-making ability and style is one of the key competency areas for which leaders are hired – and fired.


Given that on average, half of the decisions a leader makes are wrong, it makes sense that the more successful you are at assimilating lessons after making a mistake, the more likely you are to make better decisions in future, by knowing in advance what your blind spots are likely to be.


So while I can’t make your ballot choice any easier, if you’re curious to know how your decision-making style and reactions to feedback are impacting your current and future performance, call me for a chat and I’ll explain how you can take the assessment and have a confidential debriefing with me.




*Drs Robert and Jane Hogan have spent more than four decades proving that personality assessment predicts job performance, and demonstrating how personality factors influence organisational effectiveness.  I’ve been using their tools with clients since 2006 and am a huge fan, because of the accuracy, reliability and integrity of these instruments. Ask me for an overview of the tools available and how they can benefit your organisation!


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High impact conversations that transform people and companies. Sue loves working with leaders on a mission, to untap their full potential. Her specialties include entrepreneurship, leadership, integration, transformation, and growth.


Phone: (02) 8860 6540
Level 5, 4 Columbia Court,
Baulkham Hills 2153 Sydney, Australia