Intuition, Gut, and Bad Decisions












Depending on how you look at it, business or life done with a plan seems like it takes all the emotion out of it.  No impulsive purchases or decisions.  People who aren't planners believe that planning is boring.  We're all the fun police.


The mindset above pits planning against the broader organization.  People in the business believe their experiences, intuition, gut, and so forth take priority over waiting on the data or taking a chance that the numbers will overrule their value and decisiveness.


This is very difficult to overcome.  I have experienced a head of manufacturing tell me at one point "no one is going to tell me what I'm running in my plants" only to see after 3 years the same individual say "how soon can you implement your program in (other new facility)" and "I never had any idea you guys taking over would go so well."


How do we overcome this?  How can these individuals be converted to work in the process rather than to be the individuals who work to bypass the model altogether?


Include these people in the model construction up front.  Let them know a good model can't be made without getting their experiences into the assumptions. The first thing I did when building the production planning and scheduling model was ask the individual above to help with assumptions on sequencing, routings, rates, etc.  Other than the volume (for inventory plan execution we have to say "how much") but they have full power to give us all the assumptions needed above that will drive an efficient operation.


If you don't have this trust built up front when designing the entire planning process, people will bypass it.  Sales will try to run a promotion or artificially take excessive orders to "have a great quarter" without knowledge of how they're pacing against the plan.  What if it's already a great quarter and no one knows it?  What if a production planner is trying to build a plan, and a facility just runs it how they want to without much regard for how it's scheduled or planned?


Build trust up front.  In the image above, this trust and inclusion will lead to the ability to flip one of those signs and get Logic and Intuition going in the same direction.  Cross functional trust leads to inclusion, and inclusion leads to partnership and avoidance of a great deal of bad decisions by the "gut" folks.


If help is needed, reach out to us today.  If decisions in your organization are not running through it's impact on the overall plan, hope is not lost but it's time to get on a plan and get the cross functional teams working with a consensus plan and making executional decisions as a part of the overall plan or the impact on the plan.