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Decisions – Gathering information

This entry is part 3 of 9 in the series Decision Making [1]

Our topic is decisions.  As we all know, decisions are based on the available information you have to process prior to making the call.  If you have very little information to go on, you run the risk of making the wrong choice.  If you gather too much, then sometimes it clouds the water.

Some decisions are made on very few details and facts.  They are obvious to all that the direction to choose if fairly obvious.  Not much time is spent thinking about the choices and the outcome.  Everyone quickly agrees to move forward.

But some decisions require greater levels of investigation and processing of data.  These are the decisions I want to chat about.

Where do you get the data and information you need to make a large decision?  How much data do you need?  Who do you speak with?

Some of this is pretty standard stuff, so I will not spend a lot of time on it.

Search Online.  Go to your favorite search tool and type in the info you are looking for.  Use topic based searches, like “best plotters” or use related terms options in Google.  Just an a tilde ~ to your search term, like “~plotters” and at the bottom of the screen you will see related searches that Google might think you should try.  You can also just type out the entire question as if you were talking to someone, like “what is the best plotter for mylar output?” and be sure to dig a few screen in, not just the first page.

Read.  More online stuff.  Blogs, twitter feeds, websites, vendor sites, reseller sites.  Just read as much as you can.

Talk.  Talk to people in your firm and outside your firm.  Talk to people who have been down the search road before you.  Talk to the front line workers at your office.  Talk to some of the on-line personalities that you have read from the prior step.  You would be surprised that most of them will give you some advice via email.

How much?  When you start to feel overwhelmed, you may have enough information.  Review it and sift through it a few times.  You may have some holes in your information spread that need to be filled.  Reading it again may prompt more questions.

This is not an exhaustive list, just a good place to start.

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Series Navigation<< Defining the Problem [3]Decisions – Identify Limiting Factors and Constraints >> [4]
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