6 Steps to Effective Decision-Making

6 Steps to Effective Decision-Making

December 5, 2023

3 minute Read

Taking a step-by-step approach and sharing your vision for the future can help you master this skill.

Leaders are expected to make decisions. And some of a wash’s most important decisions are entrusted to leaders. It can be a fulfilling and wonderful part of the job — but it can also be terrifying if you aren’t used to making these types of calls. 

Competent decision-makers don’t just rely on their instincts to make good choices; they follow a decision-making process that helps them determine the choices they make. They know how to balance emotion with reason and make decisions that positively impact themselves, their team members, their customers and their organizations.

The good news? While it does takes time and experience to develop this insight, it is a skill that can be learned with a bit of practice.

Here are six steps to help you make more deliberate, thoughtful choices and increase the chances that you will choose the most satisfying and effective decision possible.

1.    Identify the problem.
2.    Gather information.
3.    Get the right people involved.
4.    Weigh the evidence.
5.    Commit and take action.
6.    Review your decision.

Sharing decisions with your team, especially ones that might be unpopular, takes skill and planning — and can plummet a company’s positive culture if not handled well. Remember to be prompt, anticipate the reaction, be clear, recognize resistance and have real conversations. Finally, don’t forget to look to the future and remind your team to do so, as well. If you help people see your vision for the future, they will better understand your reasoning and can help you move toward it, too.

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LEAD From the Front Lines

Rich’s Car Wash locations — in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas — have begun offering LEAD online manager training courses to their team and are looking forward to seeing how the training will help them achieve their goals. 

“We are in the beginning stages with our use and roll out of LEAD training with our team. But already we are getting feedback that the value can be seen and it is providing us with a path and plan for the growth and development of our team as we seek to grow our site managers from within rather than finding them from outside our company,” said Michael Schultz, director of training and employee development. “We believe in people as a core principle of our company and this is showing to be a great tool to demonstrate and live out this core principle.”

He said the site managers are taking it seriously — and that is the first step. He also knows when employees have completed the training as the LEAD workbooks and meetings require a sign off. “This was one of the primary reasons I felt like LEAD was the best choice for us,” he said. Plus, those are areas where he knows the employees will be able to take the training from the program to being able to apply and practice it.

Rich’s first explored LEAD as they were looking for the best ways to continue to develop and challenge their wash teams to grow and develop, Schultz said.  “Our first goal was to truly provide training to grow our leadership.  Our second goal was to show our team how much they mean to us by investing in their development and growth as leaders and people, first, and as managers with our company, secondly.  Our third goal was to be able to do this efficiently and that meant not trying to reinvent the wheel but to find a credible and capable partner. ICA and the team at LEAD are doing just that and more,” Schultz said.

“Good leadership and management to provide the best possible ongoing training and development of your teams and the development of your site management team is priority one, in my opinion,” Schultz said. “Finding good training that is industry contextualized was so important for us.”

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There’s More! Lead Tag Blue

The information in this article is part of International Carwash Association’s LEAD car wash manager training program. It is included in the “Effective Decision-Making” course of the Leadership domain, which was just released in May 2023.

LEAD is now being offered on a per-course and bundled basis if you have specific challenges or gaps in your existing training. 

Explore the new options and pricing at

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