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close this bookTraining for Elected Leadership - The Councillor as Decision-maker (HABITAT, 1994, 22 p.)
close this folderPart I. Essay on the councillor as decision-maker
View the documentDefinition
View the documentSummary
View the documentReflection
View the documentConcepts and ideas
View the documentBe rational!
View the documentProblem identification
View the documentAwareness and vision
View the documentReflection
View the documentProblems, symptoms and solutions
View the documentTalk to your problem
View the documentFurther analysis
View the documentQuality and acceptance
View the documentConsequences
View the documentWhat about group decision-making?
View the documentReflection
View the documentOther decision traps
View the documentMaking decisions in uncertainty
View the documentKey points
View the documentReferences

Other decision traps

A recent book, Decision Traps, outlines 10 barriers to "brilliant decision-making." It might be useful to tuck these in your council notebook to refer to time to time. Here are the 10 most dangerous decision-making traps as seen by the authors of a book by the same name.4

Plunging in: when you begin to reach conclusions without much forethought about what you are doing or what the consequences will be.

Frame blindness: when you create a mental framework that takes you off in the wrong direction, to solve the wrong problem, or to overlook obvious options.

Lack of frame control: failing to define the problem, or situation, in more ways than one or being unduly influenced by the frames of others.

Overconfidence in your own judgement: and your own assumptions and opinions.

Shortsighted shortcuts: such things as trusting the most convenient information available or using convenient "rules of thumb."

Shooting from the hip: acting and deciding so quickly that none has a chance to follow any systematic procedure for making the decision.

Group failure: things like "groupthink' and trusting that the group will make a good decision.

Fooling yourself about feedback: like failing to hear what others are saying or misinterpreting the evidences of past outcomes.

Not keeping track: failing to track and analyse the results of your past efforts and using them to decide for the future.

Failure to audit your decision process: when you don't take time to stop and talk openly about how you're making decisions and whether you are having the success you want in the process.

Never take two paths; the pelvis will collapse.
- Masai proverb