The OODA Loop of Agile Decision Making


An important skill for an agile credit union is the ability to be decisive in indecisive times. Previously, executives and boards made all important decisions once all the facts were in and lengthy discussions had happened. Sometimes decisions could drag on for months which frequently caused the prime opportunities to be lost.

Today, decisions must be made faster and in some cases, with less than complete information. To wait for all facts to be known, all costs to be completely understood, and to get buy-in from all board members, most likely the critical moment has passed.

A more agile competitor has grabbed the opportunity while your credit union was still thinking. Business opportunities will be lost again and again using this time-consuming approval process in the new economy.

For example, the CEO of one of my client credit unions must get board approval for any expenditure over $5,000. When this rule (and dollar amount) was established in the 1980s, that may have been a more reasonable figure. Today it’s a handcuff to timely decision making.

Decisions in the new economy need to be made with better agility. The entire credit union needs to be taught how to make proper decisions by using a basic model that is one of the simplest, most easily repeatable processes for making good decisions at the speed of the new economy.

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