Home Concepts Decison Making & Problem Solving The Empowerment Pyramid: Building the Capacity for Effective Decision-Making

The Empowerment Pyramid: Building the Capacity for Effective Decision-Making

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We have to make a decision. All of the relevant documents are laying on the table in front of us. We have spent several, often-tense, hours trying to get the facts straight and trying to get some alignment regarding our goals and desired outcomes regarding the initiative that sits on the table with the relevant documents. Will we be successful in arriving at a decision upon which we can all agree and that is likely to lead us to a successful outcome? I would suggest that many factors go into determining whether or not we will be successful; furthermore, a considerable number of these factors reside outside of our control—and we must take into account these external factors. However, some of the factors reside here in the meeting room.

These factors often relate to what I have identified as the four dimensions of group empowerment: communication, conflict-management, problem-solving—and decision-making. These four dimensions tend to stack up on top of one another. Effective conflict-management requires effective communication, effective problem-solving requires effective conflict-management—and effective decision-making requires effective problem-solving. Because they stack up on top of one another, I like to portray them as a pyramid with communication residing at the base and decision-making at the apex. With this pyramid in place, I wish to turn first to the nature of Empowerment—for it is the fundamental feature of the Empowerment Pyramid (this four-stage decision-making model)

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