Every decision you make, no matter how big or small, should be in line with your business development strategies. This is even more true for strategic decisions. Strategic decisions are complex and long-term decisions that are made only by the top executives of your company. These decisions should not be done without sufficient information as they shape the path that your company is taking.
To help you in your strategic decision making, here are some tips to keep in mind:
1. Consider Your Vision, Mission, Goals, and Objectives (VMGO)
As previously mentioned, strategic decisions will shape the direction that your organization is taking. That said, you should consider the VMGOs of your organization in making such high level choices. VMGOs are formulated by to help you stay true to the purpose of why your organization exists in the first place.
While the goals and objectives of an organization may change over time, the vision and the mission statements are lasting reminders of what your organization stands for, what it aspires to be, and what it intends to do. The decisions that you make should always resonate with these statements; otherwise your decisions will be in conflict with the identity of your organization.
2. Use SWOT Analysis
SWOT analysis is a process used by the management to understand the strengths, weakness, opportunities, and threats of your organization, and how your decisions will play into the fray. Understanding the current standing of your organization in all aspects is of paramount importance in your strategic planning process. Conducting a SWOT analysis vis-a-vis strategic decisions will help you understand the risks and potentials of each choice you’ll have to make.
3. Double Check Your Data
We’ve said it before, and we'll say it again: DATA helps you make better decisions. While you may have all the necessary data that you need for strategic decision making in business, there’s no harm in double checking your data for consistency and loopholes. Remember that it only takes one inaccurate data-based report to lead you to making the wrong decisions.
Take Google Analytics for example. There have been reports in different community forums about bots and crawlers from servers based in the United States being counted as web sessions. Cross referencing them with metrics such as average duration per session will help you determine if they are in fact legitimate users or not.
4. Check for Human Red Flags
And by Human Red Flags, we mean ego and excessive emotional investments. In the strategic planning process, you should remember that even with the right figures, you and other members are prone to making subjective decisions or suggestions based on how the outcome will benefit your position and interests. Remember that the choices that you make will be for the ultimate good of your company. A great litmus test is to check whether or not the step that you are about to take will lead you closer in fulfilling your organization’s vision and mission.
5. Ask the Experts
In making the most important decisions for your organization, it’s always best to get all the help that you can get. Seeking advice from people who has the expertise and experience gives you the benefit of having the best insights and a credible third-party opinion to assess your decisions. There are tons of firms out there that will offer their advice to you, but we encourage you to choose the one with a diverse client base and expertise on the matter.
Your organization’s strategic decision-making process should be as in-depth and as infallible as possible. Committing mistakes in strategic decisions will not only hamper your resources but will also risk the survivability of your organization. Having a reliable process, on the other hand, ensures that your organization will always take the right directions towards the path of success.
FACT: A mere 10% increase in data accessibility will result in more than $65 million additional net income for the typical Fortune 1000 company.
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This article was published 08 June 2017 and was edited 22 August 2020.