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Push decisions lower using the Decision Making Matrix (DDM) November 1, 2008

Posted by rickbron in Bronder On People, Decison making, Delegating decisions, Management.
Tags: , , , ,

p5130012.jpg Are you spending too much time making decisions for others? Are people making decisions that you should make? Many people consider the opportunity to make decisions a motivating factor. The Big Dogz know how to balance decision making down to the right level. They use a Decision Making Matrix (DMM) to facilitate the decision making of their direct reports.


Customize a DMM for each direct report. It is simple to construct and will show you how much decision making you are letting the person make. The DMM has four columns:


Column 1 — The Decision Making Opportunity (DMO)

These are the key opportunities for making a decision in a person’s job. You do not need to include all the DMO’s, but rather focus on the key DMO’s.


Examples of DMO’s

Select an approach for solving a problem

Reimburse a customer for a faulty product

Create a new product within a current product line

Design a new process for achieving a cross functional goal

Respond to a custom quote request from a customer


Column 2 to 4 — Who gets to make the decision?

  1. Decision made by you, you do not need to inform me
  2. Decision made by you after consulting with me
  3. Decision not made by you, see me


Place a check in the appropriate column for each DMO. Even people at the same level will start with a different DMM. With the focus on moving decision making to the optimum column, you can identify the most effective DMM for a position.


The DMM is an effective tool to help you identify when your direct reports can already make decisions and where you need to coach them in how to make decisions. This coaching is an opportunity for you to provide a motivation factor for your people.


Once you have identified the DMM for a specific person; review it with them and get agreement on where the checks are. When they come to you for a decision for something that is in their responsibility, remind them of the DMM. Ask them to make the decision. If they come to you with requests for decisions in column B, ask them what they would decide. If it is correct, do it and consider moving that DMO to column A.


Periodically review the DMM for effectiveness. Ask your direct reports to provide their perspective on the DMM.


The Big Dogz know that having a DMM for their direct reports helps develop the staff’s decision making skill and frees up time for the manager. Think about creating a DMM for each of your direct reports in the next 30 days. Oh, and by the way, create one for yourself and review it with you manager.



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