Life is a series of choices. And a series of decisions to pursue those choices.

How Google Works details important points in making your next decisions.

I list six secrets from How Google Works that I will use in making my next decisions, as how Google does it!

The importance of a single decision-maker

Google advocates to identify a single decision-maker for each decision that needs to be made.

This decision-maker owns the final decision.

They have the authority to execute the final decision.

They have control over the timeline of the decision-making process and can end the process timely.

They own meetings relevant to the decision being made.

The single-decision maker, presiding the meetings, must be capable of beginning and ending meetings on time.

They can ensure that meetings are inclusive, cooperative, equality-oriented and solutions-oriented.

They are able to be hands-on and steer the meetings.

They also possess (or can delegate) knowledge, skills and information necessary in making the decision.

It does not take much strength to do things, but it requires a great deal of strength to decide what to do. Elbert Hubbard
It does not take much strength to do things, but it requires a great deal of strength to decide what to do. Elbert Hubbard

The higher the importance of the decision, the greater the frequency of meetings needed.

How Google Works states that a great decision needs frequent meetings.

With frequent meetings, there is less need for rehashing the important meeting points.

Sure, email and calls are helpful in conveying messages in the company, but the tacit interaction in frequent meetings increase with the importance of the decision being made.

Albeit being the biggest time-wasters, How Google Works promotes everyday meetings for the most important decisions.

Note: not long, tiring meetings that last through the night, but everyday meetings that allow for refreshed minds.

Frequency is the key, not length.

 “If you don’t have the data, you can’t decide”

In school, we learn about the scientific method. The scientific method is a series of steps towards acquiring knowledge.

Leaving Certificate Biology

As we grow older into the professional arena, we tend to go for methods that are quick, easy, and popular.

Our decisions are made with the influence of bosses, mood of people during the meeting, or plain decision fatigue.

How Google Works commands that decisions should be data-driven.

Moreover, that everyone involved in making the decision should have the “same set of facts available to them.”

Decision makers should be careful not to make decisions based on popularity – because of personalities involved and not the facts of the matter.

Process, timing, execution are as important as the decision itself.

Making the best Google-like decisions consider three elements: process, execution and timing.

The best decisions make “people feel something,” aptly dubbed the Oprah Winfrey Rule.

Oprah Rule: The best decisions make “people feel something,
Oprah Rule: The best decisions make “people feel something”,

Decision makers must touch people’s hearts to execute the decision. Most decisions require behavior change, and behavior change requires attitude adjustment, a change of heart!

The job of the decision maker does not stop when the meeting ends! It continues until the results of the decision are achieved!

Timing may be the most underrated consideration in decision-making.

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Major decisions are often tied to major issues that are time-sensitive, so the impacts of these decisions should be measured timely also.

Yet, often we think that a decision made today is the same as a decision made yesterday. NOPE!

An agreement today has different consequences than an agreement tomorrow!

Those who wait for perfect weather will never plant seeds; those who look at every cloud will never harvest crops. Ecclesiastes 11:4
Those who wait for perfect weather will never plant seeds; those who look at every cloud will never harvest crops. Ecclesiastes 11:4

Opportunity cost must be considered: How many meetings, work days, and mental power does this decision require – and does the decision merit the magnitude of attention it is getting?

There is no one right way to make the right decisions.

In the field of social science and environmental planning, participatory planning processes are becoming the norm.

All stakeholders must be involved in the decision to build bridges, relocate housing, and demarcate industrial zones.

How Google Works expresses that multi-stakeholder processes like these are NOT the “one right way” to make the right decisions.

Top-down.

Bureaucratic.

Consensus-oriented.

All three types of decision-making processes will produce the right decisions in the right situation.

A platoon of soldiers? The commander makes the right decision.

A law for abortion control? Data and beliefs should be analyzed.

Office ergonomics? Well, most of the time, arguments about seating arrangements last forever!

The important role of the sole decision maker is to know which method can generate the best decision.

The best decisions require conflict.

The booblehead yes.

yes, yes, yes,

The term describes people who say yes to everything in meetings but dissent the final decision in private.

Their reasons? Maybe fatigue, shyness, or just plain indifference in meetings.

“Bobbleheads” can affect the execution of the decision, throwing away precious time spent on meaningful conferences.

The meeting is over, but the discussions continue in cubicles, lunches or worse, in online chats!

So, it is essential to debate all choices and options openly to prevent out-of-meeting disapproval.

And when all bets are off, conflict will ensue!

How Google Works advocates for conflict in the process of making the best decisions, so that support is full in the execution of the best decisions.

Have you encountered a bobblehead yes? Tell me about it in the comments!

Make the right decisions.

Google is a global brand because of a series of best decisions that worked for their favor. By considering these six Google lessons, the path to the right decisions is clearer.

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