Decisive: How To Make Better Choices in Life and Work by Chip Heath and Dan Heath is an important reference on strategic decision making. The authors describe critical processes to facilitate making decisions on highly complex issues with multiple decision paths and numerous complexities.
One of the most important pieces of advice by the authors is to use multiple creative processes or tracks in order to learn the shape of a problem and its potential boundaries, pitfalls and even opportunities.Often, we will have unarticulated options as more information becomes available.
Another important step is to run small experiments to test theories developed from an initial investigation and understanding of a problem. The authors show how these initial tests will help to refine a basic model and shed bias and irrationalities due to the introduction of practical application. Some decision-makers set tripwires for action when an opportunity arises for taking risks in return for advancing predefined goals.
To arrive at reality in a decision-making process, the book recommends testing assumptions and distancing yourself from preconceived notions of how things either work or should operate in practice. A final imperative is to reduce short term emotions, prepare for the possibility of being wrong, limit risk and take action if and when the options run out.
Decisive is an important resource for strategic decision articulation and action. The book will be helpful for a wide audience of institutional planners, decision-makers, senior managers and the government sector. The presentation is brief and easy to comprehend.