Decision-making models


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Who is responsible for what in your analytics efforts?

It is ironic that human skills have led to such great technological advances and that now technology has the ability to provide us with increasingly great opportunities to truly understand customer behaviour and act in order to optimize business outcomes, but at the same time often what holds us back from optimization are inherent human flaws. These flaws take many forms and may for example range from anything such as unwillingness to work in teams, to the inability to communicate effectively, and often impact on the decision-making process and therefore impede us from taking full advantage of all of the insights data offers.

Decision-making is crucial in the analytics process of taking insights found in data and making real, performance-enhancing changes. This post, to be the first of a few that will focus on decision-making, will describe 3 models of decision-making: Digital Insight Management, the Lean Analytics Cycle and RAPID. Following posts will discuss the true implications of each model and their weaknesses.

Decision-making model 1: RAPID ®

Developed by: By Paul Rogers and Marcia Blenko of Bain Company

Recommend, Agree, Perform, Input, Decide

RAPID is a model created to help organizations define the decision-making process for the highest-quality decision making, strongest performance and ability to learn from previously made decisions.

It focuses on:

  • The need to clearly define responsibilities and roles
  • Strong strategic planning and prioritization of decisions based on the value they can bring to the organization
  • An appropriate balance between control and creative freedom
  • Action, speed, and adaptability

Process: In Decide & Deliver, Rogers, Blenko and Michael C. Mankins propose a 5 step process for implementing RAPID:

  1. Score your organization
  2. Focus on key decisions
  3. Make decisions work
  4. Build an organization
  5. Embed decision capabilities

Decision-making model 2: Digital Insight Management

Developed by: Eric T. Peterson & Sweetspot

DIM revolves around leveraging your existing investment in Digital Analytics and Optimization to overcome organizational obstacles and effectively capture and communicate insights.

It focuses on:

  • Clarity in ownership of data and decisions
  • Effective team collaboration
  • Analytical understanding
  • Developing, clarifying and clearly setting out requirements from the start
  • Accountability for decision-making and action-taking

Process: Eric T. Peterson has outlined 10 steps for successfully undertaking DIM

  1. Clearly define ownership for analytics
  2. Plan to add analytical expertise
  3. Establish clear expectations for the use of data and information
  4. Learn from past experiences
  5. Define a ‘Hub and Spoke’ model for analytical support
  6. Create a consolidated view of your data
  7. Agree on Key Measures of Success
  8. Define & support analytical workflows
  9. Quantify and share your analytics-driven success
  10. Develop your own DIM plans

 Decision-making model 3: The Lean Analytics Cycle

Developed by: Alistair Croll and Benjamin Yoskovitz

The Lean Analytics Cycle was developed with the aims of helping start-ups, and other companies, ACT quickly, continually LEARN and make constant IMPROVEMENT in a fast-paced market.

It focuses on:

  • Allowing companies to focus on their critical business decisions
  • Create the best measurement framework (choose the best metrics)
  • Emphasizing the value of testing
  • Analysing results so that decisions can be made quickly and effectively
  • Continually re-evaluating the top business priorities

Process: Avinash Kaushik, in his post on the Cycle, has outlined 4 steps for carrying out the Lean Analytics Cycle

  1. Find out what to improve
  2. Form a hypothesis
  3. Create your experiment
  4. Measure your results & take action

 Does your organization use any of these decision-making models? 

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Megan Wilcock

VP of Business Development for Sweetspot. Responsible for strategic brand development, marketing and business development. BA/BComm graduate from the University of Melbourne. My passion lies in finding creative solutions and encouraging collaboration.

Add a comment

Clement Cohen

Nice summary and I like the review of RAPID as well in your other post. As you will note from our website we are in the “HPO – High Performance Organization” business. Subsequent to having built and run a publicly quoted multi-national, including our own corporate university.

What strikes me are two three things:

(1) with all of the methods is total isolation of the decision making process from follow-up and execution, which presumably will include more decisions when reality fails to match plan…
(2)the lack of clear definition and separation of “problem solving as a team” from “making decisions” as a team. At least one of the methods attempts to do mix both at once, IMHO, a big no-no…
(3) great decision making is heavily influenced by corporate structure and corporate culture. IMHO a number of these methods, particularly RAPID from Bain & Co., appear like elegant solutions for ineffective corporate structures (e.g. Matrix) and/or dysfunctional corporate cultures. They also are however, burdensome and difficult to implement. My approach would be to fix the underlying problem instead…. the corporate structure & culture first, no?

Published on July 27th 2016, 7:43 pm   

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