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Decision Quality by Jennifer Meyer, Hannah Winter, Carl Spetzler

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13Achieving Quality in Significant Decisions

The roads we take are more important than the goals we announce. Decisions determine destiny.

—Frederick Speakman

The previous chapter demonstrated how a powerful process—the Dialogue Decision Process (DDP)—can be applied to the important and complex strategic choices that shape the future of organizations. When properly applied, that process helps organizations avoid biases and produce alignment around high-quality decisions, but only a small percentage of decisions are complex enough to warrant the use of the DDP.

Many other decisions are significant, that is, not quite as complex or perhaps not as important as strategic decisions, but still worthy of effort and care. Significant decisions for organizations might include:

  • “Which distributor should be chosen to carry our product in the Southwest region?”
  • “It's time to revise our employee healthcare offerings. What plans will control costs while satisfying the needs of our staff?”
  • “What's the best marketing plan for building sales of our new product?”

These significant decisions won't make or break the business, but they will move the needle for better or worse. Similarly, individuals encounter significant choices in their personal lives, such as:

  • “What college should I attend?”
  • “What medical treatment shall I pursue to improve my health?”
  • “As the president of the homeowners association, should I move ahead with replacing the neighborhood pool, or invest this year's surplus funds ...

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