Guttman Development Strategies, led by Howard M. Guttman, is a strategic partner of CCY and focused on helping clients become high performance organizations. One of the key strategies to accomplishing this is distributed decision making.

It’s a mistake to think that executives should be the key people making all decisions. High performance teams parcel out decisions horizontally, to SWAT teams. Vertical decision making is not sustainable. What if something happens to or there is simply a change in leadership. High performance organizations need to be able to withstand that.


These are the ground rules for distributed decision making by high performance teams:

  1. Define the core issue. Know exactly what you are fixing. Specificity matters.
  2. Define how to make the call: unilateral, consensus, consultative. Consultative is almost always best and requires the right team.
  3. Define 2-3 contributing team members and one point person making the decision. You want the minimum number of people who add value.


Here’s how to pick the people for your distributive decision making team. Each team member needs:

  1. The skills and competence to understand what needs to be done and how it will affect the organization.
  2. The courage to make the call
  3. The EQ and influence needed to motivate others, spread the word and move the decision through the organization.


To learn more about Guttman’s approach to decision making, watch this video on their site: