Making Decisions

Knowledge@Wharton has an interview with Michael Useem, the auhor of ‘The Go Point’:

Along that line, watching people in office, responsible leaders — many of whom I’ve interviewed, witnessed, talked with — are very good at reaching decisions. They make timely decisions, they make decisions that are pretty good, but some don’t. As we think about American life at the moment, as we think about companies, or life in China, or really anywhere, it’s striking to me that people in mid-level office — sometimes in high office — are just not great at knowing when to pull the trigger, and how to pull it when they do.

With that as an animating concern, and being responsible in my own professional life for helping people develop their leadership, it did hit me personally a couple of years ago that this needs some attention. To give it attention, my method has simply been to go to people who are pretty good at making decisions, watch how they do it, witness them in action, sometimes ask them in retrospect to construct it.

But ultimately I suppose it is the teacher’s calling here, and that is to help people — either indirectly through academic research that I do publish as well, or sometimes more directly by providing commentary that people can draw upon — see themselves in the commentary, and thus draw lessons from it.

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Rajesh Jain

An Entrepreneur based in Mumbai, India.