(Good) Decision-making Depends on Conflict

Decision making is not about consensus. It depends on conflict, and that is the key. What we found in companies that made good decisions is that the debate is real.” This is a quote from Jim Collins in the foreword of the book “Fortune: the Greatest Business Decisions of All Times“.

(Reasoned) conflict is key to decision-making
(Reasoned) conflict is key to decision-making

It is real, violent debate in search of understanding“.

And this good conflict does not even have to end with an agreement: “Then, in the end, the leader makes the call. It’s conflict and debates leading to an executive decision. No major decision we’ve studied was ever taken at a point of unanimous agreement. There was always some disagreement in the air“.

Point taken: the next time you take a significant decision and everybody agrees, something is wrong. Either there has not been enough debate, or it is not the right decision.

How was you latest decision like?