Recently I was reading 'Fierce Conversations' by Susan Scott and came across this helpful analogy she calls the 'Decision Tree'. I have used this while coaching others to help them process what kind of decision they are grappling with. This model gives clarity to employees about where they have the authority to make decisions and take action. It also provides a path for growth and professional development, and personal accountability.
The Decision Tree:-
- Leaf Decisions - Make the decision. Act on it. Do not report the action you took.
- Branch Decisions - Make the decision. Act on it. Report the action you took daily, weekly or monthly.
- Trunk Decisions - Make the decision. Report your decision before you take action.
- Root Decisions - Make the decision jointly, with input from many people. These are the decisions that, if poorly made and implemented, could cause major harm to the organization.
This picture of a tree is useful tool in helping your team understand which decisions lie within their authority. Are you staff clear on which decisions are within their authority and which to report or seek input?
Pictures are a great way for us to learn!