Judgment is the core competence to develop for your Business
If there’s a core competence that every organization needs to develop it’s this: Judgment.
That’s a bottom line directive.
People at all levels of an organization make decisions all day long. In many of those decision-making moments, a judgment of some kind is called for. Should I trade this stock now or later? Should I accept a customer’s story regarding a mistake? How should I deal with a supplier who’s late? What can I say when my boss accuses me of something I didn’t do?
We all react to information in varying ways, depending on the situation, our level of maturity, and sometimes our mood. Without getting unnecessarily shrinky about this, suffice to say that sometimes what we see and perceive is not what really is! Judgment is the yardstick by which we measure perceived reality and make decisions about what to do next.
If your organization doesn’t have a clear set of values and a well-understood mission or purpose, those judgments can be an incredible and sometimes invisible liability!
You can’t legislate judgment and you can’t teach it in a one-day seminar. Judgment comes from experience, which usually involves a mistake or two. At the same time, you can’t be with every employee in every “moment of truth,” when a decision is called for and the outcome has implications beyond that moment. What will you do? What can you do?
1. Hire people whose values match your organization’s–screening exercises and skillful interviewing are key.
2. Create a meaningful orientation process during which new people learn not only what the organization does and who the leaders are, but also what matters most in the business and to the organization.
3. Model the behaviors that support what matters most.
4. Encourage dialog and questioning at all levels.
5. Expose people to other departments and to customers, suppliers, and other stakeholders.
6. Require managers and supervisors to learn how to coach their employees.
7. Teach people how to deal with conflict in the context of meeting business objectives.
8. Correct people when necessary, using factual information and open dialog.
Judgment can be learned by watching other people work effectively. It is the responsibility of an organization’s leaders to make judgment a core competence. It is a bottom line imperative.