How to Give a Decision Briefing - Part 2

Questions This Guidance Answers: 
  • How do I prepare a decision brief?
  • What hidden factors do I need to consider?
  • Why should I prewire a decision breifing?

In this cast, we conclude our conversation on giving a decision briefing to your manager.

  1. Use The Career Tools Decision Brief Model: SOCRR
  2. Situation
  3. Options
  4. Comparison
  5. Recommendation
  6. Request
  7. Always Consider Two Hidden Factors: Time and Risk
  8. Use SOCRR Always - Longer or Shorter, Versus Important Enough or Not
  9. Effective Decision Briefs Are Virtually ALWAYS Pre-Wired

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Thanks for another excellent podcast. I can see that this is a tool I'm going to keep coming back to again and again.

Many of the previous recommendations you've made feature the idea of BLUF (bottom line up front). I realize that this isn't something that you've featured in this podcast.

Is this a situation where we shouldn't start the presentation by saying "this is the recommendation I'm going to make"?

Just used this for the first time and....

SUCCESS! Not only did I get a "Yes" response but I got it back almost immediately with the following note attached at the bottom:

"Thanks Michael. This is a great analysis and makes clear to me both the need and the recommendation. Let's do it."

Thank you very much Mark and Mike and Wendii too!


Does it meet the Drucker test?

Superb cast, great details but I felt something was missing. I propose adding a last step. Following the decision request, establish who will do what by when to implement the decision. Even if you get a "we'll get back on this" someone still is on the hook for taking action.

As two smart podcasters -- and one management genius -- have emphasized before, don't confuse 'choosing' with 'deciding'.

- xcelerator

Decision Briefing

This is great!  My team is seeing how they can us this for many different things--from dealing with me to the city council.

They are excited because I am excited.  We have fire station capacity issues.  We will be using this with the council.

The "do nothing" discussion is priceless.  During a 1:1 listened to a discussion of water treatment and the need for a piece of analytical equipment to help manage the treatment process.  When I heard "if we do nothing..."  I was all over describing the model to the director.

Yes, Mark & MIke, this will be one of the most valuable pieces you have produced and will be listened to for a very long time.

Larry Paine
City Administrator
Hillsboro, KS