Important decisions should always be taken as a group. Since in an organization the outcome is shared by everyone. But having a large number of decision-makers means, a lot of distractions and an unsatisfactory outcome. The reliability of a decision taken in a group is questionable. There are several reasons for it like, many of the group members may have voted a decision taken by the most influential member, or some may have voted to not feel excluded, etc. This is what we call group-thinking. These members may not realize it, but decisions taken in such circumstances can bring negative results.
However, this does not mean that group decision-making is bad. On the contrary, if the group decision-making is done in the right manner, it can provide some innovative solutions. The reason for it is, when many brains work in synchronization towards a common goal, they can bring out the best ideas. The challenge is to get them synchronized.
Here are some methods for better group decision making:
Small group, high motivation:
When taking a big decision, it is always better to keep a small group. The chances of group-thinking increases with a larger group. With a small unit you get the benefit of multiple perspectives but at the same time avoid repetition of opinions. It is also advised that the individuals you pick for the discussion are also motivated about the topic.
Different opinions matter:
If your group consists of individuals with homogeneous opinions, then there is a risk of biased opinions. And decisions taken by such a group never end well. You must have a group, with diverse opinions, so that such biases can be countered. Different thoughts also mean that your biases are also kept in check.
A good way to make sure biases or group-thinking do not play out is to appoint a strategic dissenter. This person is tasked to act as a counter to the group’s decision. In a seven or more member group, appoint at least two people as the strategic dissenters, so that the group cannot band up and isolate the dissenter.
Do not over-rely on experts. They are only there to advice, but putting blind trust in them can make you susceptible to manipulation. You need to make informed decisions and not blind decisions. Including an expert in your group can also influence the other participants to modify their answers in line with the expert’s advice.
To conclude, follow these pointers and make informed decisions. Though, ultimately the quality of group decisions depends on the individuals who participate in it. So, make sure you are also working on empowering them.
Source :- https://hbr.org/2020/09/7-strategies-for-better-group-decision-making