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      What We're Reading: Decisive by Chip Heath and Dan Heath

      By Kathleen McCarthy

      04-26-2013

      A thought provoking analysis of our approach to making decisions

      Decisive.jpgIn yet another insightful and practical read presented by the Heath brothers, Decisive provides a thought provoking analysis of our often narrowed and flawed approach to making decisions in all aspects of our lives.

       

      The book makes this case by providing intriguing examples that flow from the daily struggles of everyday people to nonprofit leaders and CEOs of Fortune 500 companies. 

       

      The authors argue that all too often we approach our decisions from positions of over confidence bolstered by limited and highly selective information gathering.  To address this reality, they challenge us to Widen our options, Reality-test our assumptions, Attain distance before deciding, and Prepare to be wrong as we work through a decision.  This WRAP process takes the decision maker outside of their biased comfort zone and encourages them to look for real and often unimaginable options.

       

      One simple and easily deployed component of WRAP is the 10/10/10 exercise for "attaining distance before making a decision." 

       

      When you take the time to envision your decision and how you will feel about it 10 minutes from now, 10 months from now, and 10 years from now, you can gain an almost immediate perspective on something that might appear overwhelming when first considered. 

       

      It is a simple tool that might just help calm the gut and instill a sense of rational confidence in life and work.