It’s already a while ago that I presented my Influence Diagram to our sponsors (one may remember the Decision Analysis II article). The main value of the presentation was – as so often – in its preparation:
- I’ve had my own mind clear on what I suggest and why
- In the preparation meetings, peers and sponsors had to wrap their head around the entire topic.
So, eventually we had an engaged discussion about a situation most people had pretty well understood. While we didn’t really go through the presentation, we still arrived at – from my point of view – the right conclusions.
And a few days after the meetings, I received an email with four words: “good meeting – unlike most”.
Getting an objective decision straight despite the Decision Analysis quote from the pervious article has kept me thinking since mid-December.
Meanwhile, I have drawn an Influence Diagram for one of the more tricky questions on the job. First and foremost, drawing the chart has significantly helped clarify my own thoughts, so even if I dump it here and now, it was attention well spent. Analyzing the ~5 decisions, ~25 random variables and ~5 goals that contribute to this one set of decisions was quite enlightening.
To my own surprise, the other day I managed to transform the diagram so that I could actually present it without major unwanted political implications. The breakthrough came when I was about to give up and draw separate diagrams reflecting the assumed preferences of my main stakeholders.
Continue reading Decision Analysis II
Just before Christmas, I had a looong discussion with a friend who just entered Decision Analysis studies – a field I wasn’t even aware of until then.
Given that life for a project manager is full of decisions, studying how to do that well (both the preparation and the eventual commitment of resources) sounded like a treasure trove.
The next day, I told my boss about this discovery. He already knew what this was all about and started raving about applied maths from the lectures during his MBA. Then he quoted from his lectures:
Decision analysis serves to create transparency over actual preferences. That’s why it is rarely used in practice.