After identifying the decisions that need to be made, you need to identify the appropriate decision makers. If you’ve done a good job initiating your project and identifying the governance structure, the decision maker or makers should be clear for most decisions.
In cases where the decision maker is not so clear, you’ll need to use your leadership, communication and stakeholder management skills to find the right person or group. You may find that you need to balance group-based consensus decision making with more directed decision making by a single person.
- Fewer (or sole) decision makers generally make decisions faster, more consistently and to a consistent vision. But more concentrated decision making risks not adequately engaging stakeholders.
- Consensus-based decision making benefits from broader stakeholder engagement which can increase long term support for your project, but they generally take longer and can sometimes result in less effective, less consistent decisions.
Sometimes you can balance this by identifying an executive decision maker, but soliciting feedback on the decision options and impacts from a broad group of stakeholders. This way your stakeholders have input into the decision and your executive decision maker can make a quicker decision with the confidence they have support of the stakeholders.