The premise for this chapter is that when you are stuck and need more options, search for an organization that has already solved the problem under consideration. This is a good approach within credit unions. While not as cooperative as in the past, due to increased competition, credit unions still frequently share information on how they reached a decision or solved an issue.
Chip and Dan suggest that one effective way of achieving this is to look at your competition and benchmark what they are successfully doing and/or adopting their best practices. They used Sam Walton visiting competitor’s stores as an example. They also point out that an organization should look internally to departments or branches that have been successful and look to spread their solutions throughout the company.
Next they urge the development of a greatest hits playlist from successful decision making to help the prevention of mistakes in the decision making process. An additional place to look for ideas is in similar organizations (nonprofits or banks for instance) that have faced similar problems.
They end the chapter with a section on “Why generate your own ideas when you can sample the world’s buffet of options?”
Has your credit union or department ever visited another organization to observe best practices (reading about them is one thing, but observing them in action presents a whole new perspective)? Do you keep a checklist to make sure that you don’t overlook something in the decision making process (important for me as I have reached the stage of periodic senior moments or perhaps it is due to the lag effect of my freshman year in college experimenting with killing off brain cells)?