Original article by Decision Free Solutions
How a Paradigm Shift in understanding “Decisions” changes everything
This report combines five articles, and it’s PDF can be found here.
The five articles are:
- Introducing the approach of Decision Free Solutions (pdf)
- Leadership explained (pdf)
- Your organisation upholds racism and discrimination (pdf)
- The approach of DFS in action (pdf)
- 7 Misconceptions about “The New Way of Working” (pdf)
About this report
The instigation for developing the approach of Decision Free Solutions was a procurement methodology: the Best Value Approach. Rather than selecting a solution based on scoring a list of somewhat arbitrary requirements, it sets out to identify the expert-vendor able to achieve the buyer’s aims. Interested in applying its logic to project management, I was able to find neither the underlying first principles nor clear definitions of its fundamental concepts. So I started to define them myself. As a trained physicist I only accepted logic. Following this logic took me much further than I could have ever imagined. The articles in this report bear witness to this.
This report is a collection of five articles which, combined, show the power of a single paradigm shift: to view decision making not as a right, a necessity or “the way of the world,” but something that needs to be avoided, replaced, minimised through the utilisation of expertise. This paradigm shift — clarifying that a decision is a choice made in a situation which is not transparent — is not a clever gimmick, but follows logically from the dictionary definition of what a decision is.
In the first article the approach of Decision Free Solutions (DFS) is introduced. DFS is a generic and systematic approach, providing guidelines for new and existing methods to utilise all available expertise to achieve the goals you believe in. The approach consists out of 4 steps, 5 principles and the role of the Decision Free Leader. It can be applied in any situation where expert help is needed.
The role of the Decision Free Leader is to create the conditions required to fully utilise expertise. The second article — “Leadership explained” — defines the leadership-role, and what traits are required to take on this role successfully. It has four parts: the act of leading, the leadership trait, identifying the right leader, and “sex and leadership” (identifying the root cause of the gender gap).
The third article is titled “Your organisation upholds racism and discrimination.” It explains that hierarchical decision making is not only an anachronism negatively affecting organisational performance, but also a vehicle for a range of social biases to enter the organisation.
The fourth article — The approach of Decision Free Solutions in action — shows how the DFS-principles and guidelines explain the success of a range of pioneering organisations, and can also be used to propose improvements to them. Examples include Haier, Patagonia, K2K and Buurtzorg.
In the fifth and last article — “7 Misconceptions about ‘The New Way of Working’” — it is demonstrated how creating the conditions to optimally utilise expertise within the organisation is the essence of what is known as the new way of working. Knowing the underlying principles, a range of misconceptions which hamper the wider proliferation of the new way of working — e.g., change must be radical, hierarchy must be flattened, and it is all about trust — is exposed.
Jorn Verweij Hilversum, December 31, 2020