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Whether you’re a business owner or on the management team, it’s important to make sure that your employees have decision-making skills.

Teaching decision making isn’t a difficult thing to do, and it’s an important process that leads to more business success.

What Are Decision Making Skills?

There are many times in an office, retail, or sales setting when you’ll need to rely on your employees to make decisions. Maybe there is no manager on duty; maybe it’s just a simple decision about offering something more to a potential customer to keep them with your business.

Whatever the decision, some skills can help you and your employees make the right one.

The keys to skilled decision making are being able to make the right decision (for the business and the customer) in a short amount of time while being able to show your reasoning behind each decision you make. Harder decision making is saved for management and above, but all employees in any business need to have some decision-making abilities.

Some decisions need to be made under pressure, which can be hard for an inexperienced decision maker.

That’s why you need to be teaching decision-making skills to your employees, no matter how low on the totem pole they are. Some things factor in when it comes to how well your employees can make the right decision.

1. Is the Information Available?

To be able to make decisions for your company, your employees need the information to make those decisions.

If they don’t have it, they’re more likely to make the same exact decision that you do, as their mentor or boss. Allowing them access to the information that will give them knowledge about the business and the job they’re doing will expand their ability to do things on their own and is part of teaching decision making.

Supplying the training and information your employees need to do their job empowers them. They need to know the priorities of your business. Make sure they understand your values and vision as a business.

It is through this transfer of knowledge that your workers will start to get on the right path to making decisions that do good things for the company.

2. Are You Coaching/Mentoring Your Employees?

Go over the mistakes they’re making when it comes to decisions. People can learn from their mistakes. You can also go over those mistakes that have been made by others to help them learn even more.

Don’t just point out the mistakes though. You can motivate employees by praising them for good work too.

Let them know when they’ve made correct and useful decisions as well. Do role-playing; this is a tool that will allow you to see your employee’s decision-making skills firsthand without hovering over them and making them nervous on the job.

When an employee comes to you for advice on decision-making skills, help them out. They are taking the initiative to learn the proper ways to do things, and this should be commended.

It’s employees that continually make the wrong decision, don’t follow advice, and never ask for help that will not last. However, don’t just give them the answers they seek; make sure they’ve already analyzed the situation and have a position on the decision that they can go over with you as part of the training session.

3. Do They Know the Process for Decision Making?

Make sure that your employees know how to go through the process; they’re not just judging which decisions to make by former outcomes. Many different factors play into whether or not a decision is the right one and if it will come out as the right decision in the end.

Doing the same things for two clients might have completely different results. Teach employees to weigh the factors, instead of just following former choices.

You shouldn’t be making all of the decisions yourself. What is the purpose of having employees if you’re not going to put them to work for you? However, there will also be decisions that only a manager should make.

Make sure that part of the training process is to let employees know which decisions are their responsibility and which ones they shouldn’t be making.

Teaching Decision Making Can Better Your Business

A business with skilled employees, not just on the job, but also in decision making, is a successful business.

Well-trained employees can take some of the stress off your shoulders, and if they can make quick decisions without knocking on your office door, you can be assured that they are employees worth keeping around.

It’s your responsibility to train them in the art of decision making. Teaching decision making isn’t something you can do without focus and dedication.

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